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Economy or Parking

September 9th, 2010

Labor Day: a day off from work or for many Americans just another day without a job. 

This year it seems particularly ironic that the celebration of your ability to work warrants a day away from the office. According to the United States Department of Labor the day is a “tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” That is probably a difficult concept for many Americans to appreciate when they haven’t been working for months.

If you asked students at John Carroll what is more important to them, our parking situation or the recession, I’m fairly confident that they would say parking. It isn’t a matter of which is politically more important, but if the recession is even affecting our lives. 

When seniors started college the unemployment rate was 4.6 percent, but three years later it has risen to almost double that at 9.8 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, if every story in the news didn’t begin with “due to the recession” or “because of a changing economy,” I bet a lot of college students wouldn’t even know our economy is suffering. 

Maybe that is too bold of a statement, but what exactly does the recession mean for us?

Honestly, the recession hasn’t taken a direct toll on my life, and a lot of my friends who graduated last year have found jobs. We’ve all heard that when we graduate it might force us to strongly consider graduate school or make finding jobs more difficult. Likewise, I’m sure some of us have family members who are suffering because of lack of employment, but as long as we’re in the confines of JCU, it is not a matter of how, but if it will affect us at all.

According to The New York Times, the recession may have college students rethinking their political parties. When it is time to vote college students may act in two very different ways. They could decide they are adamantly against the way the economy is currently being run, and vote to have Republicans regain control of the House and Senate; or if they abandon their dedication to politics completely, they may abstain from voting.

Regardless of your dedication to education, or mommy and daddy’s pocketbook, eventually we will all need to find a job. So, even if we don’t feel the effects of the economy while we’re at JCU, we will soon enough.

Think of the economy like John Carroll. There used to be a lot more parking spaces, but they have been taken away and because of budget reasons it could be a while before they are replaced. If JCU represented America, and those parking spaces were jobs, it would sound kind of like our current economic situation and maybe students would be feeling the effect of the outcome.