State offices... closed! Exams... cancelled! COVID-19 is messing up plans for new graduates. But there is a glimmer of hope. Some industries are making adjustments to help get their careers up and running.
All the details are in today's EBI Screening News Weekly Wrap.
Over the last couple of weeks, we have focused on the companies that are hiring through the COVID-19 crisis, and there are a lot of them. But it should come as no surprise that the number of people applying for unemployment is up as well.
The official numbers are in for March, and the nicest thing we can say is that they are not pretty. More than 701,000 Americans lost their jobs and the unemployment rate rose to 4.4%. This is the largest single-month increase since 1975.
The industries hit the hardest are – as you might expect – leisure and hospitality. The majority are restaurants and bars. Two-thirds of the jobs were lost here.
Healthcare was next, with the majority of the losses happening in doctor’s and dentist’s private offices. Business services rounded out the top groups.
Bright Spot for Some
We all know how important truck drivers are – not just now – but always. Without them, stores would look as barren and scary as they did right before all of the stay-at-home orders went into effect.
Federal trucking regulators have issued a waiver that allows commercial truck drivers who have just their learner's permits to drive during this time of emergency. There are some caveats. In order to get the waiver, the student driver must have evidence that they have passed the CDL driving skills test, they must have a valid medical examiner’s certificate, and they must have a licensed CDL driver in the truck with them at all times.
Lots of new drivers have finished all of their training and are ready to hit the road but can’t because many states have closed their driver’s services during COVID-19. The waiver not only helps current drivers manage all the work, but it helps keep the careers of new drivers from stalling.
This waiver is good until June 30th.
Help for New Attorneys as Well
Another thing that is getting delayed is the bar exam. Thousand of new lawyers are finishing school, ready to hit the ground running – but without passing the bar – they can’t practice.
Except they can if they are in New Jersey. New Jersey Chief Justice Stuart Rabner signed an order this week that allows these new graduates to practice law temporarily until they can take the bar, hopefully in the fall.
The new grads are required to have experienced attorneys supervise them, and they will lose their ability to practice if they don’t sit for the exam the first time it is offered after COVID-19 restrictions end.
Arizona and Tennessee have unveiled similar programs.