Desmond Stokes applied for the #JetFutureBusinessLeadersScholarship and he was selected as a finalist. Read Desmond's information and essay below. To vote for Desmond, click here.
Senior at Southern New Hampshire University
Major - Liberal Arts
What Do You Enjoy About Your Studies?
What I enjoy about my studies is the challenge of learning, as well as developing the necessary skills to improve in my field. My plan after school is to become a writer in journalism.
What hobbies/organizations/jobs are you included in?
My favorite hobby is writing novels in various genres, both fiction and non-fiction. I currently have two books published and two more set to be publish by the summer.
Desmond's Essay. The gig economy is growing in the United States with more and more people relying on independent work for income. What role do you see the gig economy playing in the future of the American economy?
The future of the gig economy may seem bleak, if you ask a Californian. As of early September of last year, state Legislature passed a bill called Assembly Bill 5, to change freelance workers to actual employees. This bill in California is considered a bill that will kill the gig economy. However, the gig economy will live on, and I believe flourish, because studies show, more and more people are opting for freelance work. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2017, 55 million people or more than 35 percent of the US workforce, were participants in the gig economy. By 2020 that number is expected to leap to 43 percent. In another study, 10 percent of American workers in 2017 were employed in some form of what the government calls alternative work arrangements. In 2018 experts say that more than 1 in 3 workers are involved in some form of gig work. So we can ask ourselves, is the gig economy steadily growing? The answer is yes. JP Morgan study shows that since 2013, by examining transactions between Chase Bank accounts and 128 online gig platforms, they found that those that used app sites to lease their assets: cars, apartments, parking spaces, saw a 69 percent jump. These numbers are staggering and proof that the future of the gig economy is alive and well. Although California feels that their workers are getting bad work arrangements, many across the country feel that’s not the case. Gig workers feel that the benefits of working gigs, outweighs the negatives, such as lack of health insurance provided by the gig companies. Low wage workers are finding they can make more money working gigs, either on the side, or full time. In conclusion, more and more people are signing up to the gig economy. So whether it’s a stay at home mom, or single mother who wants to drive people around for Uber, or a single or married male, who works for door dash during nights --- there appears to be an endless stream of money that can be made. The longer the gig economy sticks around, the more companies opt in to its black hole like force, thereby, forcing others on the fringes to participate. And who knows, due to the monstrous pull of the gig economy, it may turn California back around to its never-ending growth.