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According to recent data, the majority of York students are in graduate jobs, while fewer leavers are in non-graduate jobs compared to the national average. The unemployment rate for recent graduates is also lower than current UK statistics.
The proportion of those qualified with a undergraduate degree now in a non-graduate job is 19.5 per cent, compared to the UK average of 47 per cent, which was revealed this month by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) to have risen from 39 per cent before the financial crisis.
These figures, provided by the Careers service which surveyed those who graduated in July 2013, also reveal that the most popular sector for York graduates is education, closely followed by health and social work.
The rest of the data shows that 43 per cent of York students are in graduate jobs, 31 per cent are in further study (i.e. Masters or PhD) and 6.5 per cent are unemployed. This is lower than the present national unemployment rate for recent graduates, which is at 9 per cent.
Out of the 1,955 students who responded, 292 individuals found graduates jobs in education, 256 found jobs in health and social work, and 124 found work in public and other administration. Information and communication was also a highly employed sector with 116 students in graduate jobs. In comparison, the highest employment sectors for non-graduate jobs were retail and hospitality. Breakdown of this data suggests that departments such as Psychology and Theatre, Film and Television (TFTV) have the highest number of students in non-graduate jobs.
However, sectorial data does not take into account the nature of the non-graduate jobs required to support their future career direction (i.e. jobs that may be classed as preliminary work to a graduate role). For example, some graduates from Psychology work in care assistant roles within the NHS or in teaching assistant roles in schools, which are classified as non-graduate jobs. Archaeology and Education also have low figures in graduate jobs, but due to the further qualifications needed to take on careers in these sectors.
Conversely, departments with the highest numbers of students entering into graduate jobs are Hull York Medical School, Health Sciences, Computer Science and Management. Liz Smith, Director of Careers, said: "Many of these students have a clear career path or range of career paths in mind when they arrive here, and so can make good use of the opportunities on offer, either within their department or across the institution."
Degrees with the highest employment rate of all graduates nationally are Medicine and Dentistry at 95 per cent, with Media and information studies the second-highest at 93 per cent. However, media and information students have the lowest pay at £21,000 a year, compared to medical students at £45,600 a year.
Overall, the recent ONS figures suggest that graduate employment has been slow to recover from the financial crisis, even in the context of a wider jobs improvement. Regarding the employability of York graduates, Liz Smith added: "Approximately 50 per cent of graduate jobs don't specify a degree subject.
"Even if you don't know exactly what you want to do when you arrive, and most students don't - you can still develop yourself and your ideas during your time here, and make sure you have lots to talk about in a job application when you get to that stage.
"York destination data is improving every year, and that is because our students are becoming more aware of employability and the things they can do to develop themselves - and so they are well on their way to having some clearer ideas when they graduate, rather than starting their planning after final exams and hoping for the best!"