The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Job market remains tough on CSUN students

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File Photo/The Sundial
Career center peer educators Luis Gomez, senior deaf studies major, and Yessica Campos, sophomore kinesiology major, practice training on resume critiques. Gomez says that prior to becoming a peer educator, the career center helped him find a job at the USU. Tessie Navarro / Visual Editor

The average drive to work in Los Angeles takes 29 minutes, forcing job seekers to be flexible, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

CSUN students are no exception, with many of them trying to find part-time jobs to pay for rising education, travel and gas costs.

“It has been fairly difficult to find the perfect job,” said Chris Balam, 21, exercise science major. “Not only does it need to fit your school schedule, but it has to accommodate your needs financially.”

The job market has been hard on students, but campus experts said there is one way to cut through the competition.

“People have to realize that they have to go where the jobs are,” said Patricia Gaynor, career center assistant director.

Local job counts in Los Angeles have been down for the past year and unemployment was at 13.3 percent as of July, according to the California Employment Development Department.

Neighboring counties have lower unemployments rates, reported the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Orange and Ventura counties’ unemployment rates stand at 9.2 and 10.3 percent, respectively.

Unemployment figures do not count jobless students, but more unemployed adults means more competition for younger job seekers.

Some CSUN students are opting to work in areas outside of Northridge and many of them have maintained their positions despite the travel distance.

“I’m willing to work an hour away because I don’t want to risk leaving and not be able to find a job closer to school,” said Carlos Maciel, 21, mechanical engineering major.

Gaynor said it is important for students to consider their post-graduate plans and careers when searching for jobs.

Accounting and marketing major Octavio Cortes, 22, currently maintains his position at a retail store in Camarillo.

“Once I graduate I’d like to be promoted within the company I’m currently at,” he said. “The 45 mile distance to work isn’t so bad because in the long run it’ll be worth it.”

Students looking for local jobs should register at CSUN’s Career Center, which provides access to a list of various companies looking to hire, Gaynor said.

The center is unable to determine how many students work in the area around campus and it is difficult to identify the types of jobs students are taking, Gaynor said.

“Right now there is no typical job that students are vying for,” she added.

For many students just looking for a part-time position to help pay for educational expenses, this is no time to be picky.

“I’m just desperate for anything right now,” said Balam. “The job market is so tight, especially around school. I just want to find something that will pay the bills.”

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