University education continues to be the route to a better job.
The government recently announced that almost half of all 17 to 30-year-olds in England now go on to higher education, the highest number since the introduction of £9,000 fees in 2012.
But why is the number of university students on the rise when tuition fees, student loans and graduate debt are so often considered a deterrent to higher education? After years of study, graduating with debt will be a major reason why potential students, and their families, ask themselves if a university education really is the best way to start a career.
The answer lies in graduate career prospects. All universities have an increasing duty to give students the skills, confidence, knowledge and networks to maximise their professional opportunities once they graduate. At York St John University, we want to ensure we are doing everything possible to give our students the experiences and expectations to operate confidently and successfully throughout their careers.
As well as creating even more work experience prospects, placements, internships and volunteering opportunities, we’re introducing a number of bespoke initiatives for our recent graduates including a new Grad2Director programme for those wanting to start their own business.
The Grad2Director initiative offers graduates a free, expert-led programme providing online and face-to-face coaching opportunities to turn a good idea into a real business. Developed in partnership with Dr John Park, an international expert in product and service innovation, the programme takes graduates step-by-step through the stages of planning, testing and implementing their business ideas. “We’re using digital technology to deliver on-demand education”, explains Dr Park. “By building this support around the needs of recent graduates, we’re providing the start-up coaching, support and funding so vital for creating the next generation of entrepreneurs”.
For many students, going to university is a life experience, a chance to be part of a community of learners, to conduct research or find out how to think like an entrepreneur. The personal growth that students go through by attending university is about so much more than just honing skills for a future career, but ultimately, the primary reason most students give for going to university is to get a good job.
Here’s why: in 2016, graduates earned on average £9,500 more than non-graduates. And despite the myth that there aren’t enough jobs for graduates, employment data shows that most graduates get jobs soon after leaving university.
A university for life
At York St John University, we have a strong record of graduate employment. Around 93% of our graduates are in work or further study within six months of graduating. We pride ourselves on providing career support that takes an individual and bespoke approach for each student. And whilst many universities offer careers support for a number of years after students leave, York St John University is committed to supporting its students for life to raise their individual and economic aspirations.