My current contract ends May 24th and unfortunately there is nothing available for me with the same employer in the near future. I've been lucky while in school with this employer and right now they are paying me exceptionally well. I just finished school, so anything I apply for is going to be entry level, I know I'm going to take a solid wage hit.
Right now I'm filling in a maternity leave contract, and when my boss offered it he felt I was fluent enough in regards to the position requirements, and since he had it in the budget, that he would pay my the full salary of the woman who is off. It is a mid-level position which is why it paid so good even though I wasn't finished with college.

I just had my 2nd interview today with a company, the job posting seemed promising before I applied and after the first interview it still seemed like a pretty good fit for a right out of school job. Not a career, but a starting point and stepping stone.
Met with them for the second time today and the wage is exactly half what I'm making now. Was a bit of a shocker, I hope my facial expression didn't sag when they told me the hourly $.
The job posting stated "above entry level" for the wage.. well to me the wage they offered isn't even entry level, I made more on my second and third year co-op placements.
Basically I was willing to take a $10/hour hit, and hoping it would be more around losing $5/hour. But this is kind of a lot worse than what I was willing to go down to. 70-75% my current wage is what I thought to be fair, not 50%.

What is the best way for me to ask for more? Most grads of my college program make $5-7 more an hour than what they offered me. I don't really want to come back to them sounding like whining (basically what I'm doing here on oppo lol) by saying "well I make *this* now. the job posting said *this*. everyone I know makes in *this* and *this* range" but what else is there to say?