Self-employed youth and youth employed in governmental positions: an analysis of high school and beyond data

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Virginia Tech

This ex post facto descriptive study used personal and environmental variables to differentiate 1,318 youth who attained either self-employment or positions working for a governmental entity within four years after high school. Differentiation was assessed based on the "push" and "pull" theories of employment. The sample was taken from the High School and Beyond 1980, 1982, 1984 and 1986 Sophomore Cohort database. The sample was analyzed as a whole, by females only, and by males only. Statistical techniques used in this study included factor analysis, logistic regression, Cramer's phi, and canonical correlations.

Attainment of either self-employment or employment in a government position for the sample as a whole,for females, and for males could not be explained by the study. Neither could environmental variables indicate type of employment (signifying that these youth were not "pushed,") nor did substantial evidence exist favoring the impact of personal variables on employment choice (indicating that these youth were not "pulled.")

Further research is needed to understand the self-employed/small business owner profile for developing potential entrepreneurs and an appropriate high school level, entrepreneurship curriculum.

government employment