Rural college students are an important, integral part of the current urban labor force. This article uses a group comparison perspective to study the professional career opportunities and their impacting factors of rural college students and other related groups. Analysis of 2010 Chinese General Social Survey data shows the following: (1) college students who transfer from agricultural to nonagricultural status and urban college students have the same opportunities to enter party and government organs and state-owned enterprises, have the same opportunities to obtain elite professional status, and have about the same economic incomes; (2) even if they have received college degrees, if they have not achieved the transition from agricultural to nonagricultural status, rural household registration status will decrease the professional career opportunities of rural college students, and their work unit status, professional status, and income levels will be lower than those of urban college students; (3) in non–college student groups, transitioning from agricultural to nonagricultural status will also increase the aforementioned professional career opportunities for the urban labor force with rural backgrounds. The article presents views on six social groups in the current urban labor force, and through empirical analysis lays out the nature and extent of the impact of household registration status and higher education on professional career opportunities.
- economic income
- household registration status
- occupation type
- work unit type