Eighty-one percent of Coos County’s 2009 high school graduates say they don’t see job opportunities for themselves at home. And, more than 60 percent say they see those opportunities getting scarcer. That's according to the most recent survey results from the Carsey Institute's 10-year Coos Youth Study, published this week.
Yet, the project’s manager Eleanor Jaffee says, Coos has seen some economic growth over the last two years. There’s been a slight decrease in the unemployment rate, and an increase in money spent on meals and rooms. Because of that small amount of growth, Jaffee says, she’s excited to see how the students respond in next year’s survey.
I'm wondering how that message is going to filter down to youth. Are they going to say ‘oh, there's this revival economy’ or, if they've grown up with this sense that ‘Coos isn’t where I'm not going to find a job,’ and if that will take precedence.
Since 93 percent of the young people reported a desire to live near their family, Jaffee is hopeful an improving economy could bring some young people back to Coos County.