Recession Effects Linger for Mid-Missourians

7 years 6 months 3 weeks ago Sunday, March 18 2012 Mar 18, 2012 Sunday, March 18, 2012 5:30:00 PM CDT March 18, 2012 in News
By: Megan Noe

JEFFERSON CITY - For the first time in three years, Missouri's unemployment rate is less than eight percent. The Department of Economic Development reported the January unemployment rate at 7.5 percent-- the lowest since the 2008 recession. The road to individual recovery, though, is often a longer one.

Economists declared the U.S. recession ended in June of 2009. Nearly three years later, for many mid-Missourians, its effects still linger.

"It's not over. It's not over for a lot of people, and there's a lot of people that it won't be over for for a good long time," said Patty Hopkins of Sedalia.

Hopkins worked seven years for the Missouri Department of Conservation before she was laid off in July of 2011. Despite eighteen months warning, Hopkins said it's a change you're never ready for.

"I felt like when things started going wrong with jobs and the job market, I'm like, ‘State employee, I'm fine, it'll be okay, we'll work through this.' Don't ever count your chickens before they're hatched."

Leanna Lawson knows that feeling. The single mom who's worked since she was 16 has been on unemployment for more than a year now, after losing her job as a certified nursing assistant last March.

"I'm 31 years old and I moved back home with my parents because on half of an income I couldn't afford to stay... and that's horrible."

And with a hit to personal finances comes a change in daily habits.

"You make drastic changes. You don't go out to eat, you eat at home a lot more, you don't go to the movies, you don't do any of that fun stuff. You do, but it's very rare," said Lawson.

"I was kind of at a stage where things were pretty comfortable, we had the extra money to do some of the fun things we wanted to do, retirement plans getting lined out, and now all of a sudden it's a conscious thought all the time that things aren't so comfortable anymore," added Hopkins.

For both these women, though, hard economic times have brought new opportunity-- the chance to go back to school.

In recent years, growth in the numbers of older students has outpaced younger students. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, enrollment of students 25 and older rose 43 percent from 2000 to 2009, and is expected to rise another 23 percent by 2019.

Lawson is a student in the Saline County Career Center's Adult Business Technology program. Hopkins, a practical nursing student, said she's getting the chance to pursue a lifelong dream.

"When I was just getting out of high school, my father tried to convince me that I would make a great nurse. I really pondered the idea then, but finances weren't so that I could."

It's individuals like Tim Turner that give Lawson and Hopkins reason to hope.

Turner had worked almost 22 years at Jefferson City's Johnson Controls when the plant closed in 2008. Now a licensed practical nurse at the VA hospital in Columbia, Turner credits family members for guiding his career path.

After being out of school for 29 years, Turner went back-- and calls it the best decision he ever made.

"Went back, found out that I could do it, and I love what I'm doing. I love being a nurse, I love the people I take care of, so no, I don't think I'd change a thing."

And though Lawson, Hopkins and Turner all agree the recession is still going strong, they remain cautiously optimistic about the future.

"Tomorrow's a new day. It definitely can turn around; whether it will or not, we'll see," said Turner.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA — The CEO of Dow Inc. has donated $6 million to a new University of Missouri health institute... More >>
38 minutes ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 12:49:00 PM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
KEYTESVILLE- A mid-Missouri father filed a wrongful death lawsuit Wednesday against the man accused of causing his disabled daughter's death... More >>
2 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 11:21:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
ROCHEPORT - The Columbia Department of Public Health and Human Services is opening community-based pop up flu clinics in Boone... More >>
3 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 10:20:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Moms Demand Action is partnering with Stop the Bleed Coalition to hold crisis first aid training on... More >>
9 hours ago Monday, October 14 2019 Oct 14, 2019 Monday, October 14, 2019 3:40:00 AM CDT October 14, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Maries County sheriff's deputies said a drunk driver was to blame in a fatal car crash from early... More >>
16 hours ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 8:46:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Drivers on I-70 westbound saw 2 mile long delays around mile marker 124 when the Missouri State Highway... More >>
21 hours ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 4:18:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
ROCHEPORT - The Missouri Department of Natural Resources said the number of people using the Katy Trail is down by... More >>
22 hours ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 3:08:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - The CDC began monitoring the 2019-2020 flu season this weekend. And doctors are urging people to get their... More >>
22 hours ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 2:55:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in Continuous News
COLUMBIA — Six Columbia churches had their first Sunday service with improved emergency health precautions on Oct. 13. The... More >>
23 hours ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 2:00:00 PM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
HARSTBURG – Celebrating another fall season with pumpkin carving, hayrides and a straw maze, the 28th annual Hartsburg Pumpkin Festival... More >>
1 day ago Sunday, October 13 2019 Oct 13, 2019 Sunday, October 13, 2019 8:00:00 AM CDT October 13, 2019 in News
TOKYO (AP) — A heavy downpour and strong winds pounded Tokyo and surrounding areas on Saturday as a powerful typhoon... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 8:03:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
LILBOURN, Mo. (AP) — A small earthquake has been reported in southeastern Missouri. The U.S. Geological Survey says... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 7:41:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA — One person died after a crash in Cooper County Saturday morning. Haven Pennington, 19, drove her Pontiac... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 4:55:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
There is 5:40 left in the game. North Kansas City's Ronaldo Calderon kicks a field goal to give the... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 12:36:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
JEFFERSON CITY — The dome of the Missouri Capitol building will be lit pink in honor of breast cancer... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 12:08:00 PM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
HARTSBURG - The Hartsburg Pumpkin Festival announced parking will be moved to the river roads near the festival grounds. ... More >>
2 days ago Saturday, October 12 2019 Oct 12, 2019 Saturday, October 12, 2019 5:50:44 AM CDT October 12, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - A Columbia man is behind bars after a search warrant turned up illegal drugs and and a firearm.... More >>
2 days ago Friday, October 11 2019 Oct 11, 2019 Friday, October 11, 2019 10:07:00 PM CDT October 11, 2019 in News
COLUMBIA - Below are scores from football games around mid-Missouri. Final scores are in bold. ... More >>
2 days ago Friday, October 11 2019 Oct 11, 2019 Friday, October 11, 2019 6:39:00 PM CDT October 11, 2019 in Friday Night Fever
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 67°
2pm 67°
3pm 69°
4pm 70°
5pm 67°