Coronavirus leads to job hunt struggle for soon-to-be college grads

Published: Apr. 21, 2020 at 10:08 PM EDT
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Ohio’s economy is essentially closed and unemployment numbers are at or nearing record levels. This time of uncertainty is troubling for everyone, including college seniors about to graduate with hopes of getting into the workforce and starting a career.

Alec Marshall, younger brother of 13abc reporter Micaela Marshall, is a soon-to-be 2020 graduate. He's spent the last four years working toward a degree in Marketing with a minor in Professional Selling at the University of Cincinnati.

He's a proud Bearcat whose college experience came to an unexpected halt.

"It's kind of a bummer to just kind of end it like two months prior, before it was actually supposed to happen," said Marshall.

The 22-year-old's new reality is finishing up school online at home and accepting that he won't be walking across the stage to accept his diploma.

"It's really just a ceremony at the end of the day, but like I still achieved everything I wanted to achieve," he said.

Alec was proactive in his job search. Back in January, he accepted a position with a company near Cincinnati. He re-signed his lease on his apartment and was excited to begin his career.

But as coronavirus concerns grew, he reached out to verify he still had a job.

"They said 'Yeah, we're not hiring anybody else, but your position is still locked in, still got you coming on late June or early June. And I was like 'OK, great, you know, just wanted to make sure.' And then maybe about a week-and-a-half, two weeks after that, they sent me an email saying it was no longer available," said Marshall.

That exact situation is what the senior worked hard to avoid.

"I haven't been actively applying for jobs for well over six, seven months, so I was kind of glad that that's all done, but I got to start over again," said Marshall.

Now his days are spent on LinkedIn, and he's even had a few interviews. Marshall is confident he will find a new start to this next chapter of his life.

"It's going pretty smooth honestly. I'm a bit surprised, but a lot of people have been reaching out to me," said Marshall.

Knowing he's not alone brings a little comfort. Alec believes a positive outlook goes a long way and he encourages his fellow seniors to find the silver lining.

"Ty to stay positive, you know, kind of look at the good things that could come out of it because there's always some good things when bad things happen," he said.