Entries in Jobs (205)


Breaking New Ground: Oil Boom Draws More Women to Industry

Comstock/Thinkstock(LIBERAL, Kan.) -- Even before she suits up in her overalls and laces up in steel toe boots to head out to a drilling rig, Linda Trujillo is breaking new ground as one of the pioneers of America's gold rush.

The single mother of three says she first heard about the good paying jobs available in the oil fields from her older sister.

Trujillo made the decision to quit her job at a fast food restaurant in New Mexico, and move her family to Kansas -- one of the states experiencing an oil boom.

She says she spent the money from her tax refund to earn a license to drive heavy construction equipment.  Today, she's the only woman on a six man drilling crew.

"It's really stressful to work around a lot of men, and being the only woman. It's kind of awkward, but I manage.  They've adjusted to me," she says.

Trujillo's bold move was once unheard of, in what has mostly been a man's world.  But that world is beginning to show dramatic change.

According to Rigzone, a group that analyzes data for the oil and gas industry, approximately 48,900 women worked in America's oil fields in 2004.  The latest numbers from 2012 show 78,400 women working in the industry -- an increase of 29,500 in just seven years.

Todd Seba, Trujillio's supervisor, calls her one of his most valuable employees.

"We're a team, so as long as you're part of the team, you fit in," Seba says.  "She's good, she's good, she's part of the team and that means a lot."

For Trujillo, the gamble to start a new career has paid off.  She's now making $14.65 per hour with plenty of overtime pay.  She says she has moved her family from a "run down trailer" to a three-bedroom house.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


General Motors to Add 600 New Jobs 

Bill Pugliano/Getty Images(DETROIT) -- General Motors is adding 600 new jobs at its Lansing Grand River assembly plant to assist with the development of the Cadillac ATS, the auto company announced Wednesday.

A GM official said it has already hired 460 of the new hires and has identified who will fill the balance of the new positions. The new hires will be utilized in the plant's second shift.

The auto company has used the Lansing Grand River plant exclusively for its manufacturing of Cadillacs. The ATS will be the auto maker's first small luxury vehicle and is expected to compete with the BMW 3 series and Mercedes Benz C class within that market space.

The company hires are expected to make an estimated $16 an hour.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Philadelphia Woman, 73, Testifies Age Has Kept Her Unemployed

Courtesy of the Senate Committee on Aging(NEW YORK) -- Sheila Whitelaw of Philadelphia is a college graduate and has managed three different non-profits as executive director.  Despite her experience, she said one particular trait may have caused difficulty in her two-year job search: her age.

Whitelaw, 73, said she never had difficulty working or finding a job until she was laid off from a clothing business when she was 71 and had to look for work.

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) estimates that about 4.2 million older workers were unemployed or underemployed in January 2011, and 3.65 million remained unemployed or underemployed in December 2011.

Whitelaw says age discrimination may be playing a part in her ability to get part-time or full-time work.

"I have really good credentials and a very varied background but have seen myself involved in age discrimination in the workplace," she said.

Unemployed, and with her husband, who suffers from Alzheimer's disease, in a nursing home, Whitelaw's income is from Social Security benefits and food stamps of $35 a month.

She said she has sent out "hundreds and hundreds" of resumes and had 15 job interviews, with employers sometimes dissuading her from applying for various reasons, such as the physical demands of the job.

Whitelaw testified in front of the Senate Special Committee on Aging on Tuesday for a hearing called "Missed by the Recovery: Solving the Long Term Unemployment Crisis for Older Workers."

"I feel very passionate about it because I don't get a chance to talk about it," she said. "I know unemployment is high everywhere, but I'm not sure people are focused on the older worker and we have a lot to offer."

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 protects individuals who are 40 years of age or older from employment discrimination based on age, for both employees and job applicants.  However, worker advocates say greater education and outreach is needed as employers continue to discriminate against the mature workforce.

While younger workers have had the highest unemployment since the start of the recession in 2007, older workers have seen the biggest increases in long-term unemployment.

By 2011, 55 percent of unemployed older workers had been actively seeking a job for 27 weeks or more, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office. The April GAO report stated that only a third of older workers displaced from 2007 to 2009 found full-time work by 2010.  Those who did had greater earnings losses than re-employed younger workers.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Job Market Improving for New Grads

Tim Boyle/Getty Images(BOSTON) -- Employment prospects for new college graduates are better now than at any time since the start of the recession, say college placement directors, employment experts and students themselves.

In fact, a just-released study of 225 employers by Boston research company Millennial Branding finds 87 percent of employers say they will hire more new graduates this year than last.  Almost as many say that in the past six months they have already hired up to 25 new graduates each.

The study is a first for Millennial, which consults companies on the characteristics of Generation-Y.  The survey drew on data compiled by Experience, Inc., a provider of career services for some five million current students and recent graduates.

Dan Schawbel, Millennial's founder, says that while the job picture is brightening, it's not yet back to where it was before the recession. Young job seekers, he says, still need to be realistic about their prospects.

"The message of our survey is that you can't rely on anything anymore.  Getting a degree doesn't mean you'll get a job.  Getting an internship doesn't mean you'll get a job," Schawbel says.

The most successful candidates, he says, are those who, as undergraduates, pulled out all the stops: "You've got to get as many internships as you possibly can.  Use social networks.  Use your family and your friends."

As far as skills and attributes, what are employers looking for?  Schawbel says 29 percent of companies say they want somebody with entrepreneurial experience.

"Ten years ago," he says, "that number wouldn't have been anywhere near as high."  What's changed, he says, is that companies now need "to innovate or die."  There's more pressure on them to come up with new products and services.

Successful seekers, says Schawbel, don't necessarily have to have started a business.  They just need to present their experience in a way that shows they have initiative and creative ability -- that they are "independent minded."

"Maybe you started your own blog.  Maybe you've freelanced or you created your own internship," Schawbel says.  Any of those, he explains, would carry weight with an employer.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Missouri Petitions to Raise Minimum Wage

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- What's the national minimum wage? If you're, say, one of three Republican candidates running in Missouri's U.S. Senate primary, you might be hard-pressed to remember it (it's $7.25).

But if you're one of about 173,000 people living in Missouri, you can probably rattle it off the top of your head. That's the number of people in Missouri -- enough signatures to put the measure on the November ballot -- who signed a petition to raise the state's minimum wage from the national average per hour to $8.25 in 2013, and provide for cost-of-living adjustments in the future.

The measure would also require that employees who earn tips receive 60 percent of the state minimum wage, up from the current 50 percent. And if the federal minimum wage rises above the state rate, then Missouri would adopt the federal wage and apply cost-of-living adjustments to that.

There's a good chance that the measure will pass. Missouri Jobs with Justice, a backer of the minimum wage proposal, supported a successful campaign in 2006 to approve a ballot measure that raised Missouri's minimum wage to $6.50, with adjusted cost-of-living increases.

But not everyone is in favor of it. Some critics of the change says the ballot summaries and cost estimates for the proposals are unfair.

Many economists maintain that raising the minimum wage can negatively impact employment numbers, especially among teenagers and young workers. Scott Brown, chief economist at Raymond James Equity Research, in St. Petersburg, Fla., said that he does not think the Missouri situation would cause any problems. "It's probably not going to matter much," he said. "The typical concern is that it will lead to less-entry level jobs for young people. That's the fear. But again -- what's the going wage and what are the typical starting salaries in an office or fast food? Very often those are well above the minimum wage in some areas."

On its website, the U.S. Department of Labor lists the states whose minimum wage is above the national average, below, the same -- or doesn't have a minimum wage law. (23 states have a minimum wage at the federal level of $7.25.)

Here's the top states with the highest minimum wages:

1. Washington


2. Oregon


3. Vermont


4. Nevada, Connecticut, Illinois


Here are the bottom states with the lowest minimum:

47. Arkansas


(Applicable to employers of 4 or more)

48. Georgia


49. Minnesota

Small employer (enterprise with annual receipts of less than $625,000) $5.25

Large employer (enterprise with annual receipts of $625,000 or more) $6.15

50. Wyoming


(Applicable to employers of 4 or more employees)

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Only Half of Recent College Grads Employed Full Time

Goodshoot/Thinkstock(NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J.) -- The great recession has taken a heavy toll on college grads, with only half of those who graduated between 2006 and 2011 reporting they have full-time jobs, according to a new study.

The survey by Rutgers University’s John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development was based on a random sample of nationwide interviews with 444 people who graduated from college during the period.

“Although many have had a full-time job since graduation, only half the sample was employed full time at the time of the survey,” the report’s authors said. “College graduates are unsure about their ability to move up. Only one-fifth believed that their generation will be more successful than the one that came before them. Well over half said they will be less successful.”

Fifty-one percent of responders had full-time jobs, the survey found, while 20 percent were in graduate school. Part-time workers made up 12 percent, and 11 percent were unemployed.

Read the full report.

The median starting salary for those surveyed was $28,000, some $3,000 less on average than pre-recession grads.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Survey: College Graduates Struggling to Find Work, Pay Loans

Ryan McVay/Digital Vision/Thinkstock(NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J.) -- Just a few years ago, new college graduates had little trouble finding a job within a year of finishing school.  Now, the outlook for those about to jump into the job market isn't so bright.

"It has been a challenge, it really has," says Madeline Rivera, who is about to graduate from Fordham University.  "I've heard that it's getting better out there and I'm sure that's true, but in reality a lot of my friends are still having trouble finding jobs."

A new survey out Thursday seems to affirm that sentiment.  Researchers at Rutgers University found that only half of recent college graduates are working full-time.  The poll was completed last month and included 444 graduates from the class of 2006 through 2011.


Of those who managed to snag a full-time position, the median salary earned was $28,000, making it difficult for recent graduates to pay off their student loans.  The survey found that 55 percent of students owed an average of $20,000 upon graduation.

As a result, graduates have had to resort to jobs outside of their fields to make ends meet.

"A lot of people have had to do that -- choose something else that will sustain them for now.  You have to pay off loans.  You do what you have to do," says Rivera.

Furthermore, graduates who have landed positions don't feel they are on the right track.  Only 20 percent saw their first job as being on their career path, according to the survey.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Obama Gives Congress To-Do List on Jobs, Economy

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(ALBANY, N.Y.) -- Jabbing Congress for its inaction, President Obama Tuesday outlined an election-year “to-do list” for lawmakers, urging them to act on his proposals to boost the economy and spur job growth.

“I know this is an election year, but it’s not an excuse for inaction. Six months is plenty of time for Democrats and Republicans to get together and do the right thing, taking steps that will spur additional job creation right now,” the president told students at the State University of New York in Albany.

The president is using his “handy little to-do list” to portray Republicans in Congress as standing in the way of his economic agenda. “Just saying no to ideas that we know will help our economy isn’t an option.  There’s too much at stake,” he said. “So even if Republicans are still saying no to some of the bigger proposals...there are some additional ideas that could help people get to work right now and that they haven’t said no to yet.  So I’m hoping they say yes.”

Flanked by screens broadcasting an image of his checklist on a Post-it note, the president seemed to mock gridlocked lawmakers. “Every member of Congress should have time to read it and they can glance at it every so often.  And hopefully we’ll just be checking off the list, just like when Michelle gives me a list, I check it off,” he said to laughter from the audience.

The five items on the president’s wish list are all measures he has previously proposed but that have failed to gain traction on Capitol Hill. The list includes eliminating tax incentives to ship jobs overseas and tax credits for clean energy and small businesses.

Obama is also asking for help to create a “Veterans Job Corps” and for lawmakers to act on his latest plan to help homeowners refinance mortgages at lower interest rates.

In the weeks to come, the president said he will continue to urge Congress to act on these measures, which he said “will help accelerate our economy and put people back to work -- not in November, not in next year, but right now.”

While Tuesday’s speech was an official presidential event, Obama managed to sneak in his new “forward” campaign theme.

“We’ve got a long way to go if we’re going to make sure everybody who wants a job can find one and every family can feel that sense of security that was the essence of America’s middle-class experience. But we can’t just go back to the way things used to be.  We’ve got to move forward to an economy where everybody gets a fair shot, everybody is doing their fair share, everybody plays by the same set of rules,” he said.

“That’s what you guys are doing here in Albany.  You’re investing in your future.  You’re not going backwards. You’re going forward,” the president said.

But Senate Republicans Tuesday blasted Obama's "to-do list," saying that it comes 3 1/2 years too late.
“Instead of him proposing a to-do list for Congress, we have a to-stop for him,” Sen. John Thune, R-S.D. said Tuesday. “And one is to stop the job-killing regulations that are strangling small businesses in this country, stop making it more expensive and more difficult to create jobs for America's small businesses, stop proposing tax increases on the job creators that are out there, stop blocking the Keystone pipeline that would help move America toward energy independence, and stop this class warfare, which is just destructive to the debate that we have in this country."
Thune says Republicans would rather focus on policies that would help the unemployment rate, gas prices and health care costs.
“Those are things that we would love to work with this president on when it comes to moving the country forward, rather than his to-do list that is 3 1/2 years too late,” Thune said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


European Concerns Keep US Stocks Down Another Day

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Investors are clearly concerned about the U.S. and European economies.  Stocks were down at the close of trading yet again Tuesday. The Dow closed down 76.44 points, or 0.6 percent, the fifth consecutive down day for the Dow. The S&P and Nasdaq were both down about 0.4 percent.

Still, there was a silver lining for the markets.  Crude oil settled at $97.01, down 93 cents in New York trading Tuesday.  This was the fifth straight day that oil has traded lower.  With falling global crude oil prices, the Department of Energy forecasts that the average price of regular gasoline for the April through September driving season will be $3.79 per gallon, 16 cents lower than the previous forecast.  Adjusted for inflation, this price would be about the same as last year's average during the summer months.
Meanwhile, the Labor Department said that employers advertised 3.74 million job openings in March. That’s the most since July 2008, just before the financial crisis took hold. According to this data, there were 3.4 unemployed people competing for each open position. This means that the current increase in jobs could likely continue.  That said, it's not clear if the pace of hiring will pick up dramatically in the near future. At the worst of the job market, there were about seven people competing for each open position.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Jobs Data Reflects Plight of New Graduates

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- One of the bleakest spots in the tepid recovery of the U.S. jobs market is the difficulties young people are facing.  The unemployment rate for 16- to 24-year-olds was 16.4 percent in April.  Though this number is down from its highs in 2010, it’s still at levels last seen 30 years ago.

One impact of this deplorable jobs market for younger people is that household formation in the U.S. has been shrinking.  A college education, once considered a sure way of financial independence, is no longer a guarantee of a job in your field or even any good job.  Many young people are being forced to move back in with their parents, unable to afford a home of their own.

According to latest data from  the Census Bureau, new household formations are growing at a historically slow pace.  Young people do not find themselves financially secure enough to forge their own way.

President Obama has made young people a focus of his campaign.  On Friday, the president traveled to Washington-Lee High School in Arlington, Va., to speak with juniors, graduating seniors and their parents.  The president spoke to the high schoolers about student loans, which have only complicated matters for new graduates.

Ballooning student loan debt -- it recently topped $1 trillion -- and a bleak job market mean the new college graduates today face a daunting start to their professional lives.

Many economists believe that young people who are not able to find jobs suffer long-term consequences.  The initial setbacks may mean hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of lost wages and opportunities.

The economy is creating jobs -- 115,000 in April -- but not at a pace strong enough to battle some of the most ominous problems with the job market including creating enough high-quality entry-level jobs.  It seems then that the new generation of American workers is in trouble, and that could mean many more economic problems in years to come, from tax revenue to housing to consumer spending.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

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