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College Major, Internship Experience, and Employment Opportunities: Estimates from a Résumé Audit

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Author Info

  • John M. Nunley
  • Adam Pugh
  • Nicholas Romero
  • Richard Alan Seals, Jr.

Abstract

We use experimental data from a résumé-audit study to estimate the impact of particular college majors and internship experience on employment opportunities. Our experimental design relies on the randomization of résumé characteristics to identify the causal effects of these attributes on job opportunities. Despite applying exclusively to business-related job openings, we find no evidence that business degrees improve employment prospects. Furthermore, we find no evidence linking particular degrees to interview-request rates. By contrast, internship experience increases the interview-request rate by about 14 percent. In addition, the “returns” to internship experience are larger for non-business majors than for business majors.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, Auburn University in its series Auburn Economics Working Paper Series with number auwp2014-03.

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Date of creation: Apr 2014
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Handle: RePEc:abn:wpaper:auwp2014-03

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Related research

Keywords: College Major; Internship; Employment; Field Experiments; Correspondence Studies; Résumé Audit;

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  1. Marianne Bertrand & Sendhil Mullainathan, 2003. "Are Emily and Greg More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal? A Field Experiment on Labor Market Discrimination," NBER Working Papers 9873, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Josef Fersterer & Jörn-Steffen Pischke, 2008. "Returns to Apprenticeship Training in Austria: Evidence from Failed Firms," CEE Discussion Papers 0088, Centre for the Economics of Education, LSE.
  3. Philip Oreopoulos, 2011. "Why Do Skilled Immigrants Struggle in the Labor Market? A Field Experiment with Thirteen Thousand Resumes," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 148-71, November.
  4. Kory Kroft & Fabian Lange & Matthew J. Notowidigdo, 2012. "Duration Dependence and Labor Market Conditions: Theory and Evidence from a Field Experiment," NBER Working Papers 18387, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Joanna Lahey, 2005. "Age, Women, and Hiring: An Experimental Study," NBER Working Papers 11435, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Kory Kroft & Fabian Lange & Matthew J. Notowidigdo, 2013. "Duration Dependence and Labor Market Conditions: Evidence from a Field Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 128(3), pages 1123-1167.
  7. Eriksson, Stefan & Rooth, Dan-Olof, 2011. "Do Employers Use Unemployment as a Sorting Criterion When Hiring? Evidence from a Field Experiment," IZA Discussion Papers 6235, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  8. Josef Fersterer & Jörn-Steffen Pischke & Rudolf Winter-Ebmer, 2008. "Returns to apprenticeship training in Austria: evidence from failed firms," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 19380, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
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Cited by:
  1. Saniter, Nils & Siedler, Thomas, 2014. "Door Opener or Waste of Time? The Effects of Student Internships on Labor Market Outcomes," IZA Discussion Papers 8141, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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