Employment Status of Adults Ages 25 to 34, by Educational Attainment
In 2016, among adults who were employed, those with a bachelor’s degree were almost 8 percentage points more likely than adults with only a high school diploma or alternative credential to be employed full time (89.4 percent compared with 81.6 percent). The unemployment rate of all 25- to 34-year-olds whose highest level of education was high school was 11.1 percent, more than triple that of adults whose highest level of education was a bachelor’s degree (3.5 percent). Among those same populations, 22.4 percent of those whose highest level of education was high school were not in the labor force, compared with 8.6 percent of adults whose highest degree was a bachelor’s degree.
U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey, 2016 5-Year Estimates (2012–16)
These data include all individuals, including those in the military, incarcerated, or enrolled in school. Those in the military are counted as employed. Those incarcerated are counted as not in the work force. Those enrolled in school are counted the same way as individuals who are not enrolled.
Employed includes individuals employed either full or part time. Individuals working at least 35 hours per week are categorized as having full-time employment.
The unemployment rate is the share of people in the labor force who are not employed. People without jobs who are not actively seeking employment—who are not in the labor force—do not affect this measure.
Individuals not in the labor force include a host of categories, including students, retired workers, and stay-at-home parents.