Turn on the TV or radio and you’re bound to hear how grim it is for graduates at the moment.
From starting salaries falling year on year, to a massive increase in numbers of applicants for a rapidly depleting pool of job vacancies, it’s a sorry state of affairs. Throw in rising tuition fees, unparalleled levels of personal debt and well, you get the picture….
This week’s Financial Times says that a degree has ‘..ceased to be a golden ticket to a decent job” and that “..Corporate Britain has become risk averse…which has made it harder for graduates to find a way in..”. In addition, figures from the most recent Office for National Statistics report into the labour market tell us that 47% of recent graduates are now in jobs that don’t need a degree.
We delved a little deeper into the facts and figures and discovered that:
It’s not all grim out there – there’s a shortage of graduates going into areas like engineering.
Subject choice has a major impact on earnings. Graduates in medicine, engineering and physical sciences earn well above average. Arts graduates had relatively low levels of pay.
Subject choice has a big bearing on ability to secure a job. Graduates with degrees in the arts had the lowest level of employment; furthermore, 40% of arts subjects graduates are working in non-graduate jobs.
We know we’re being a bit facetious but doesn’t this beg the question, Should you ditch your plans to study an Arts degree if you want a graduate job?! After all, speaking in Oxford last month, our own PM, David Cameron said that students are increasingly choosing degree courses based on the career prospects they offer.
So, we’re wondering, if you want a ‘graduate level job’ should you forget your dreams, be pragmatic and swap Music Studies, Fine Art or Journalism for a subject that’s more likely to land you land a job?