College graduates will have more job opportunities this year

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COLUMBIA — Good news for the class of 2016 college graduates: there's a better chance you'll get hired than in years past.

Employers are expected to hire 5.2 percent more graduates this year compared to 2015.

The increase in expected hires is actually down from the 11 percent increase employers expected in November 2015, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employer's Job Outlook 2016 Spring Update report.

The change from 11 to 5.2 percent is because one-third of employers said they do not want to hire as many graduates as previously stated.

One graduating engineering student, James Clynes, said he accepted a job with MODot in Jefferson City to design new bridges that are built in Missouri. 

"I thought it was a great opportunity for me, and I really liked what the company had to offer me," Clynes said. "They said, 'You'll have a lot of fun here, and it seemed like a really nice environment. So, I decided to take the chance and go with it."

Clynes said most of his friends are taking jobs in Kansas City because it has a lot to offer engineering majors, but he decided to stay in mid-Missouri to be closer to his family. 

"I think its a good distance away to where I can do my own thing and still be able to travel home in about an hour, an hour and a half, and see my family," he said.

The Mizzou Alumni Association reported 12 percent of MU graduates decide to stay in Boone County, which is almost 30,000 out of the more than 150,000 alumni in Missouri.

These students stay for various reasons: good job opportunities in the area, continued education and close family members.