After at least 3 years of university and upwards of £30,000 worth of debt, you would expect to see graduate students entering the professional working world where they can apply their skills and expertise.However, new figures show that over 50,000 students have taken jobs in non-graduate work, such as hospital porters, secretaries and clerks.
Around 10,000 graduates are also involved in ‘elementary’ jobs such as shelf fillers, security guards and farm workers, after just six months of graduating. What’s more, figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency show that 13,900 new graduates are unemployed.
These figures raise the question as to whether a university degree is actually worth the time, effort and money if it cannot guarantee a graduate job 6 months after graduation.
Why are graduates struggling to find a professional role upon finishing their studies?
The Higher Education Statistics Agency show that from 2002-2015 over 90% of full-time first degree leavers are in employment or further education within the academic year, yet the type of employment is not specified.
It could be argued that the government needs to develop more high-level apprenticeships to replace certain university degrees.
Others, such as Sir Peter Lampl, chairman of the Sutton Trust and of the Education Endowment Foundation, believe that students should be given further information about the career prospects of their chosen degree so as to ensure a solid career path.
Overall, the only thing that can be said for sure is that university doesn’t guarantee a professional career, with around 10% of students remaining out of work 6 months after graduating.
Before heading down a subject route at university be sure to look at the career prospects they offer after graduating, and what skills they can provide upon entering the workplace.
Furthermore, it cannot be forgotten that a degree is not the only thing that an employer looks for; gaining work experience or completing internships over the summer can increase your chances of landing a graduate job.
Finally, determination is key when applying for numerous posts over many long months, but even though it is not shared often, it takes many students several months to find their perfect job in which they are able to use the skills gained at university.