The Georgia Department of Labor reports that Atlanta's unemployment rate is dropping, according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution.

The city added 8,600 new jobs in March, and saw its jobless rate fall from 10.2 percent to 9.8 percent since February, the news source adds.

In addition, hiring at temporary employment agencies – usually a harbinger for full-time hiring – rose. Correspondingly, there are fewer payroll jobs in Atlanta than there were one year ago.

However, over the past year, the city also lost 4,900 non-farm jobs – the only major metro city in the United States to lose jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

With the economy still in flux and in the absence of traditional private sector positions, many recent college graduates are turning to public service positions for employment, notes The New York Times.

"The millennial generation is a generation that is just more interested in making a difference than making a dollar," Max Stier, president and chief executive of non-profit group Partnership for Public Service, told the news source.

In 2009, 16 percent more recent graduates worked for the federal government than in the previous year, and 11 percent more worked for nonprofit groups, the news source adds.  

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