Unemployment Rate

Part-Time Work the New American Norm

The U.S. economy is sort of adding jobs, in pieces

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Michelle Asci dreamed of capturing life through her camera lens. Asci had her sights set on being a photographer as she graduated with a bachelor of fine arts degree from Georgia State University in December.

But the 23-year-old is not working as a photographer. She's at a concession stand, selling popcorn or ushering people into their respective theaters before the midnight screening. Asci's been working part-time at the same Atlanta movie theater since 2005.

"It's going on to be eight years of this," she said. But working part-time at a movie theater was not what she saw herself doing with her degree, and she is not alone.

Last month's surprising drop in U.S. unemployment rates from 8.2% to 7.8% gave many hopes that the economy is improving, and the lower rates even beat the expectations of some economists. But a breakdown of the latest jobs report shows that more than half of the jobs added this month are part-time.