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There Is Life After College: What Parents and Students Should Know About Navigating School to Prepare for the Jobs of Tomorrow

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  325 ratings  ·  51 reviews
New York Times Bestseller

From the bestselling author of College Unbound comes a hopeful, inspiring blueprint to help alleviate parents’ anxiety and prepare their college-educated child to successfully land a good job after graduation.

Saddled with thousands of dollars of debt, today’s college students are graduating into an uncertain job market that is leaving them financia
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published April 12th 2016 by William Morrow
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Jeri Rowe
Jul 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
As a senior writer for a local university, I'm always in search mode for books that shine a light onto what I see on campus. And after reading Carol Dweck's "Growth Mindset," a book our faculty are using to road-map how to get their students ready for the working world, I saw Jeffrey Selingo's book in our university library in the New Book section and figured, "Why not?" I'm glad I did.

Selingo, the former editor-in-chief at the Chronicle of Higher Education, used his journalistic skills to write
JP Michel
Dec 30, 2016 rated it it was ok
Jeffrey Selingo presents several modern challenges in educating and preparing youth for the workforce. He summarizes the problem as follows: students blindly follow, don’t think about what they want from college and don’t make the right decisions to make sure college pays off as a long-term investment.

The book contains many useful stats that paint the picture of the current education and work landscape. It also reports on the new innovative ideas and initiatives in this space, including gap year
Jun 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Every parent of a college age child or recently out of college AND every college age child and recently graduated child NEEDS/MUST read this book. It explains the job market for the 21st century and what the college age/recently graduated person needs to do to be successful.
Kerry Flatley
May 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
An eye-opening look at how college and the post-grad job market has changed since we were in school
Kristy  Barngrover Clear
I enjoyed this book but it didn't completely resonate with my experiences working at liberal arts institutions. Many comments seemed too general to me. ...more
May 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
“’It didn’t prepare me at all for the real world,’ Jessica said somewhat abruptly”. This sentence begins Jessica’s description of her experience at one of the US News top 10 national liberal arts colleges in the US. The quote, from Jeffrey Selingo’s new book, There Is Life After College: What Parents and Students Should Know About Navigating School to Prepare for the Jobs of Tomorrow, also captures in dramatic fashion one of Selingo’s main themes. The book details how schools, educators and stud ...more
Abby Mcnaughton
Jul 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
I am a relatively skeptical person when it comes to self-help or life advice books. This book, however, was surprisingly straightforward and informative. I really internalized some of the information, which is often not the case for me. Selingo was not necessarily trying to push for one particular path; instead, he presented information that, if we like, can help guide our decisions. Overall, I'm glad I read this book. It's definitely one of the better books of its kind. ...more
Jun 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
There Is Life After College is a must read for anyone who is in a bachelor's degree program, planning to enter a bachelor's program in the near future, or has a child who is planning to enter a bachelor's program in the near future. Jeffrey Selingo does a fantastic job presenting a comprehensive overview of the current state of higher education and what students need to know to navigate starting a career in their twenties. He also addresses a number of related topics that desperately need a bigg ...more
Feng Ouyang
Aug 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Written by the journalist on education Jeffrey Selingo, this book discusses various aspects of how to optimize college education and experience to be successful in career. The primary premise is that the current college education lags behind the fast development and evolution of the workplace. As a result, many college graduates face difficulty in finding a job and excel in it.
The author believes that the modern economy looks for workers with a T-shape knowledge structure. The works need to hav
C. Patrick G. Erker
I found this to be a useful guide for navigating the rapidly evolving college-to-career pathways. While I'm not making those moves at this point (I entered the workforce out of Duke University in 2007), the book provides an insightful look at how careers are changing and what that means for student-employees as well as for universities, employers, and intermediaries. (My sister is a rising high school senior who simply LOVES getting advice from her much-older brother, so the book provided some ...more
Jul 31, 2018 rated it liked it
This book would be especially helpful for motivated high school seniors to read (and perhaps their parents), as Selingo has done a fair amount of research into the differentiating qualities of students who graduate from college and go on to find personal and career success, and those who struggle to find their way.

*Spoiler alert: direct quotes from the text to follow.

"The most important choice students can make is whether they are on the party-social pathway through college...or are investing
Reid Mccormick
Dec 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: higher-ed
“Our twentieth-century education system is woefully out of sync with this twenty-first-century economy that demands highly knowledgeable and flexible workers.” This quote from the introduction of Life After College perfectly sums up the entire book. To simplify this quote, education is woefully out of sync.

When I graduated college Myspace was the reigning champion in social media. Facebook, at the time, was a hobby or diversion for a few college students. Today, Myspace is a memory and Facebook
Oct 15, 2020 rated it liked it
Selingo makes some really good points in the book. Obviously with many nonfiction books, there is information that is not relevant or necessary for readers, but is needed purely for the validity of the arguments made. He doesnt make many arguments, but rather provides suggestions. I feel like the findings are to be expected and pretty self explanatory. However, it was cool to learn about specific examples of changing education models. There were also a lot of evidence for gap years which was int ...more
Zhuo Zhang
Jan 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
very helpful.
Skills for success: curiosity, creativity, grit, digital awareness, contextual thinking and humility
1. Be curious, ask questions, and be a learner for life;
2. Build an Expertise, take risks, and learn the meaning of grit;
3. Every job is a Tech job, if you have analytical ability to go along with writing and communication skills. Data-driven skills in a variety of occupations are the future.
4. Learn to Deal with Ambiguity. We should compliment children for their efforts instead of i
May 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved Selingo's book College (Un)bound, Wish I had read this one sooner. Good perspective on the ways in which our higher ed system is disconnected from the workplace, and the value for individual students in taking gap years, focusing on skills they care about, and exploring their interests early enough to let those impact their majors. In addition, the book celebrates the value of internships that offer a real opportunity to test out skills and see what a workplace is like (whether through c ...more
Jul 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Detailed but still applicable to anyone in high school, college, or beyond and their parents. Plenty of helpful reminders and tips to ensure you purposely forge your career path based on your personal goals rather than wander blindly through college by helping hands.

Selingo does a good job at not being pessimistic about job prospects for millennials and instead focuses on the ways that people from all positions can get on that on ramp to what their personal definitions of a successful career.
Dec 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: parenting
This is a must read for any parent thinking about sending their teenager to college and/or for the teenager themselves.

As a college graduate, I figured I already knew how to guide my daughter in selecting a college, but I was wrong! Although most colleges have not caught on yet, the game is quickly being changed by new employer demands. Gone are the days where you just get any old degree and then a good job will automatically follow. Now the student must be their own advocate and seek out the o
Anne Libera
May 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Interesting research around how students and colleges are exploring and adapting to the ways in which work and recruiting have changed. It's a complex subject and made all the more so by the speed at which things are changing as new technologies develop - I had a sense that the author was hesitant to commit himself to any precise thesis for fear that his conclusions would prove wrong in the next wave of change. I would have appreciated just a bit more of a clear premise or conclusion. ...more
Meghan Toomey
May 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I find this book to be so valuable for current college students and families as well as those about to enter that world. It is so relevant and holds important information that students should consider in navigating their college journey.
Stephanie Wilson
Dec 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I suggest parents read this before your kid goes to college. college is a whole different universe now, the helicopter parents have transformed it. This book will help you talk to your kid about what's important and help you know when to step back and let them make mistakes. ...more
Oct 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
I thought this was a good book for what it set out to prove. However I disagree with some of the points that were made in it. College isn’t the only way to get ahead in life but for those who take that path this is a good book to listen to or read.
Jan 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
The book does a great job of pointing out the changing nature of jobs and the difficulty in getting them, especially by following the advice of the 1980s and before. Unfortunately, just like the job market, the advice in this book is often scattered and often conflicts with itself.
Jul 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
Had some good tips for college students.
Overall informative.
Jul 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
You AND your student need to read this!
Jan 05, 2018 rated it liked it
Better than College (Un)bound, if you ask me. Emphasis on the "navigating" school and careers advice. Could be useful for advising. Not exactly earth-shattering for higher education, however. ...more
Chihiro Sen
May 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
A very informative book.
Kelly Mcquiston
May 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Listened to the audiobook version of this. The narrator was fine, not fabulous. If you have time for only one I would recommend How to Raise an Adult - same concept, better content in my opinion.
Sarah Logan-Reynolds
Jul 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
As a person who definitely wandered into my current career, I honestly agree with the entire book. If you are a college bound high school junior or parent of one, this book is a good read for you!
Dhantha Gunarathna
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
I like his analogy of becoming a 'T' shape person vs 'I' shape person ...more
Dec 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, must-read, college
Selingo knows what he's talking about, and he backs up everything he says. A must-read if you have kids nearing college admissions madness. ...more
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Jeff Selingo is the leading authority on higher education worldwide and editorial director of The Chronicle of Higher Education. He speaks on the topic often and appears regularly as an expert on radio and TV, including NPR, PBS, ABC, and CBS.

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