Depalma, Anthony. "With Jobs Scarce, Many Turn to Graduate School." New York Times 3 July 1991. 7 Apr. 2008 .
In this New York Times article, Anthony DePalma describes an economy in which jobs for newly graduated students are scarce and few in between. As a result, many college graduates are opting for graduate school. The students recently graduated are well aware of the scarcity in the labor market and know that finding a job after college would not be easy. Job recruiters are hiring almost half as many workers as they thought they would. Thus, graduate school applications are up by 20% in the largest 430 institutions that offer graduate programs. Graduate admissions directors know that during a poor economic period, it's common for graduate school applications to increase. However, they will only be able to accept 2% more applicants than in previous years. Another problem is that less financial aid will be available because of budget constraints and cuts due to the bad economy.
In The Graduate, Benjamin Braddock graduated from a prestigious school in the Northeast with a stellar record that includes being editor of the school paper for two years and captain of the track team. Despite these achievements, he is without a job come graduation. His father recognizes this problem and urges him to apply to graduate school and become a doctor or lawyer. While the status of the economy is not mentioned in the movie, Mr. Braddock realizes that his son is wasting his talent by sitting beside the pool each day. On another note, by not getting a job Benjamin is refusing to conform to the social norms of his day. Although his father wants him to get a job or attend graduate school, Benjamin doesn't want to do either.