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Weekly Edition - Published 14 November 2015


Local News Report - Mobile Page


Most graduates say work experience not qualifications counts in race for jobs

80% of recent university graduates in the North West say experience of work is important when trying to find a job, whilst just 54% think qualifications were important, according to research commissioned by independent education charity, the Edge Foundation. The OnePoll* survey found that among graduates in the region who had found work, 48% are in jobs which don't require a degree, while 27% said they could have got where they are now without going to university.  The OnePoll also discovered that:-

36% of recent university graduates in the North West said their degree wasn't worth the money.

25% said if they'd known of all the available options they would have considered doing an apprenticeship.

7% of recent university graduates in the North West surveyed have no job at all.

The findings are published ahead of Skills Show, that runs from 19 November to 21 November 2015, is the nation's largest skills and careers event, of which Edge is a lead sponsor.  Phil Broodbank, aged 22, lives in New Brighton on the Wirral. He initially planned to go to university, but the dramatic rise in the cost of the fees made him look at other options. He had always enjoyed being 'hands on' and had an interest in planes, so took up an apprenticeship in aircraft systems with Airbus, based near Chester. Phil Broodbank said:- "The 1st year was very college based, but in the second and third years it was great to have practical experience. I have my NVQ and BTEC level 3 qualifications in aeronautical engineering and I'm now an electrician with Airbus working on short haul flight aircraft. I really enjoy the job and am doing an extended national diploma to further my skills."

The Edge Foundation is urging young people to visit The Skills Show at the Birmingham NEC to see the variety of options for further education and training available. Employers such as Jaguar, Crossrail and Virgin Media and further education colleges will offer advice and information about the apprenticeship and training opportunities they offer. The Edge Foundation's Acting Chief Executive, David Harbourne, said:- "People have been led to believe that a degree is a guaranteed passport to success, when in fact university is not the only route to a rewarding and prosperous career. Our research reveals that many young graduates feel let down. We need a range of learning options, not only because graduates are feeling short changed on their investment, but because we need a skills base which will serve the increasingly technical and diverse UK economy."

* OnePoll contacted 1,000 graduates aged 21 to 35.


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