Students are four times more career focussed after their first year of university

The latest Student and Graduate Career Confidence Report from Milkround results shows that less than one fifth of graduates had considered their career before starting university.

The survey included 1700 students and graduates and reveals that only 19% had considered which kind of job they wanted before starting university. During first year however the figure rose to 79% due to reported factors such as understanding their potential options available to them through their chosen degree.

The Student Room users showed a mixture of responses when it came to their reasoning behind their A levels, future choice of degree and post university plans:

“I am taking Maths, Physics, Chemistry, Geography and hopefully Further Maths incorporated in there also somewhere. I am still debating what to take further up the line, however current thoughts is an Engineering course.”

“Biology, Chemistry and economics.”

“Don’t know what I’m going to do. I’ve contemplated, medicine, A&F, dentistry and going straight into work after sixth form.”

“Geography, Chemistry, Biology, Physics (yes, i know- without maths!)”

Results also showed that 42% of respondents felt that the media had convinced them they wouldn’t be able to find a job post graduation.

Students and graduates however remained divided whether the media had affected their job seeking motivation, 18% reporting a negative effect and 17% positive. The main concerns were ‘too much competition’ (69%) and ‘not enough jobs’ (55%)

Approximately a quarter of the students and graduates took the view that the criteria for jobs had been set too high, many may feel they possess the appropriate skill and drive but struggle to get themselves noticed. The economic climate at present was reflected in the respondents’ answers when it came to students’ ‘career confidence’, only 4% of final year students felt optimistic about the economy and only 11% had hopes of it improving in six months time.

Spokeperson for Milkround Mike Barnard described the report as a ‘barometer of current thought for how university students and graduates viewed their opportunities in the job market’ and that it provided ‘a fascinating insight into their current confidence levels and how they view their opportunities to find work.’

It’s also interesting to note that roughly a quarter of students and graduates think the criteria for jobs have been set too high.  This could suggest that many feel they possess the skills and talent necessary to succeed in graduate roles, but find it difficult to get themselves noticed.