If you’re an underemployed American then life is definitely tough. But, having a higher degree and being underemployed could greatly change your perception of bad things actually are.

Results from a new Gallup poll showed that college graduates and postgraduates that were underemployed perceived their lives to be more difficult than those with a lower education level. Specifically, 17 percent less Americans with higher degrees that were underemployed believed they were “thriving” than those that who were employed. The differences between those with lower education levels was just 10 percent in comparison.

Here’s how the numbers broke down:

High school or less514110
Technical/vocational/some college574710
college graduate675017

‘Employed’ is defined as those that either employed full-time or part-time but are not seeking additional work, while ‘underemployed refers to those that are unemployed and employed part time and are seeking additional work.

Age Also A Factor In Life Evaluation:

Gallup’s poll also showed that age also made a difference in how Americans perceived their lives in the event of underemployment. Those between the ages of 30 to 64 were more likely than other age groups tracked to downgrade their life outlook when underemployed. In fact, those in that age bracket were reported to have been thriving at a rate 23 percent lower than those at the same age but employed.

The poll also showed that those aged 45 to 64 were 21 points less likely than those employed and of the same age range to be thriving. The rate of young adults that are underemployed  and thriving was 10 percent less than those employed.

Differences were also noted across both racial and socieoeconomic lines. You can refer to Gallup’s website for full poll results.

When it’s all said and done, Gallup’s poll results determined that underemployed individuals with higher education levels are more likely to have a negative outlook life because may have invested significantly more money into education and may carry student loan debt. Mid- to late-career-aged underemployed Americans may also experience greater feelings of negativity because they may have expected to have achieved more in their careers.

Do you agree or disagree with Gallup’s poll results? Let us know in the comments section.

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