Home » NEWS » Study: State lags in employment for young adults

Study: State lags in employment for young adults

ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — Young adults in Mississippi were less likely to be employed in 2011 than their peers in other states, according to a national study.

A Kids Count report by the Annie E. Casey Foundation said 51 percent of 20- to 24-year-olds in Mississippi had jobs in 2011. That’s the lowest employment rate in the U.S. The national average for the age group was 61 percent.

The study discusses “disconnected youth,” or people aged 16 and 24 who were neither employed nor in school.

Mississippi’s employment rate for 16- to 19-year-olds was 23 percent — lower than the 26 percent national average but not the lowest in the nation.

Children who grow up in poverty are less likely to have personal connections or go through mentoring that could help them find jobs, said Mississippi Kids Count director Linda Southward.

Mississippi has long been one of the poorest states in the nation. It also has one of the highest teenage pregnancy rates and an “alarming number of kids who are not completing high school on time,” Southward said.

“We really do need to have a two-generation strategy to make any systemic life changing or generation changing outcomes in Mississippi,” said Southward, who’s also a professor at Mississippi State University’s Social Science Research Center.

The study is called “Youth and Work: Restoring Teen and Young Adult Connections to Opportunity.”

It said that employment among young people was at its lowest level since World War II. Almost 6.5 million 16- to 24-year-olds were not in school and didn’t have jobs in 2011. About 77,000 were in Mississippi.


… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About Megan Wright

Leave a Reply