Starting Salaries for Graduates Down

Here’s some more depressing economic news. It turns out starting wages for college graduates are down. According to a recent report by the Economic Policy Institute:

Since 2000, America’s young college graduates have seen wages, adjusted for inflation, deteriorate.

After gains in the 1980s and particularly in the 1990s, hourly wages for young college-educated men in 2000 were $22.75, but that dropped by almost a full dollar to $21.77 by 2010. For young college-educated women, hourly wages fell from $19.38 to $18.43 over the same period.

Here’s a graph EPI provided to illustrate this:

wagechart

This is particularly troublesome given that the cost of college itself has skyrocketed in the last 30 years.

While this chart might seem familiar to people who recently graduated from college, it might seem a little peculiar to education advocates. As EPI explains, “this lack of wage growth may be particularly surprising to those used to reading about the vast unfilled need for college graduates, which if true would lead to increases in their earnings.”

Then again, I’m pretty sure the starting wage for everyone is down in this economy.

Daniel Luzer

Daniel Luzer is the news editor at Governing Magazine and former web editor of the Washington Monthly. Find him on Twitter: @Daniel_Luzer