This Catch-22 is absolutely vicious for young people and career changers who want to invest their own money in STEM education. If the outlook for junior technical jobs is poor — why invest money in new skills?
In large companies, management is paying out dividends to shareholders right now, not investing it in human capital.
In start-up land, companies have their pick of experienced folks, often at bargain basement prices, because of the continued weak growth in high-paying jobs and under-employment.
In both realms, corporate budget politics work against juniors considerably. Managers want to keep their budgets high and build their empire, so they will ALWAYS request senior folks if they are given budget to increase head count.