Opening Up Maryland Jobs

by Apurva Mahajan ‘22

Governor Larry Hogan recently announced that four-year college degrees will no longer be a requirement for many Maryland state jobs. This will allow more residents to work without the massive debt that comes with acquiring a four-year college degree. The Maryland state government currently employs 38,000 people, and the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) estimates that more than half of these jobs can be done with enough experience, training, or a community college degree in place of a Bachelor’s Degree. This is the first bipartisan initiative like this in the country, and it should be implemented throughout the rest of the country, possibly on a federal level as well.

Implementation of initiatives that provide people with state jobs without four-year degrees would allow more qualified individuals to get these jobs when a lack of college degrees were holding them back. A private out of state four-year college costs around $50,000 per year, even in-state universities cost upwards of $30,000 per year. 65 percent of students seeking a bachelor’s degree have student loan debt. By expanding the opportunities for non-degree candidates in the workforce beyond just state and government jobs, the unemployment rate could decrease while people would simultaneously receive livable wages without having student loan debt.