With some patience, New Jersey's newest college graduates will likely get better results from their job hunt compared to past years.

"Generally speaking, conditions are good," Carl Van Horn, director of the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University, told New Jersey 101.5. "It's a good year for most people getting out of college."

As always, the chances of landing a job depend on one's field of study. According to Van Horn, the healthcare industry and computer software industry continue to perform well, and graduates with STEM (science, engineering, technology and mathematics) skills are in high demand.

On the national level, unemployment for people with college degrees sits at 2.2 percent — nearly 2 points lower than the overall unemployment rate.

Preliminary figures put New Jersey's unemployment rate at 4.6 percent in March. The state's jobless rate has fallen annually since hitting 9.5 percent in 2010.

Van Horn said college students expecting to graduate in May should have already started their job search. For those who haven't, a visit to the institution's career office can help with interview prep and shed a light on anticipated compensation.

"Although there's a lot of hiring that takes place at this time of year on the part of businesses recruiting on campuses, it may take several months before you land a job," Van Horn said. "So be patient, but be diligent. We always say that looking for a job is a job."

On a 2017 list of the best starting jobs for New Jersey college graduates, career site Zippia ranked 'computer programmer' at No. 1, followed by 'medical and clinical laboratory technologist' and 'computer systems analyst.'

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Contact reporter Dino Flammia at dino.flammia@townsquaremedia.com.

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