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New graduates maintaining their optimistic attitudes


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POSTED: Sunday, May 17, 2009

Neneng Rosmy expects it will be challenging to find a job in this economy with a master's degree in library sciences.

Library budgets are being slashed and she's competing with people who have different degrees for a few open positions.

“;We might be starting as volunteers,”; said Rosmy, 34, with a laugh. “;I am going to find a job and then if I don't find a job, I might get another degree.”;

About 2,300 students earned degrees and certificates yesterday at the University of Hawaii at Manoa's graduation during the weakest economy in decades.

Hawaii's jobless rate was 7.1 percent in March, the highest in three decades.

Despite the economic recession, Rosmy and several other graduating students remain optimistic.

Ichiro Misumi, 35, received a doctorate in microbiology yesterday.

“;I'm having a hard time,”; he said, but added he will continue his research in microbiology for now.

Blake Hendrickson, who graduated with a master's degree in speech, plans to travel for a year and teach English in South America. He said his department usually hires alumni to teach for the summer, but the positions were cut this year because of the budget.

Hendrickson, 26, plans to eventually return to school for a Ph.D. in communication.

“;It's a really good time to be in school,”; he said.