Rise in number of Scotland's graduates in permanent jobs

Generic student holding degree The overall number in some kind of work or further study after graduating last year has increased

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Just over half the people who graduated in Scotland last year have permanent jobs, according to latest statistics.

The official figures indicated 55.6% of those who graduated last year were in permanent posts within six months, a 2.2% rise on 2009/10.

Another 19% were in further study or training; 8.9% were in temporary jobs; 5% were working abroad and 5.9% were thought to be unemployed.

In total, 73.7% of the graduates who found work were in graduate level jobs.

The remaining 26.3% were in a job for which no degree was necessary.

Education Secretary Mike Russell said graduate unemployment was lower in Scotland than the rest of the UK.

"Today's figures confirm the value of our universities and a Scottish education," he said.

Start Quote

Graduate unemployment of any level represents a huge waste of talent”

End Quote Robin Parker NUS Scotland president

"The most recent statistics from the UK on graduate destinations showed that Scotland has the best outcomes for those leaving higher education with a qualification.

"Information from Ucas also shows that many students from England and Wales view our universities as the right place to study and our institutions also continue to do well in world rankings for academic excellence.

"The information being published today is further evidence that studying in Scotland gives students, regardless of where they're from, a firm footing to take up employment or further studies."

The Lib Dem's education spokesman, Liam McArthur, said: "These are encouraging statistics, but also further evidence why more must be done to widen access. Students from a broader range of backgrounds should be able to benefit from these opportunities."

However, Margaret Lynch, chief executive of Citizens Advice Scotland, said too many graduates were underemployed.

'Squeezes out'

"We welcome the increase in the number of graduates in work, but this is just a small step along a long road to tackling unemployment for graduates and other young people," she said.

"The number of graduates out of work is still far too high, and our own research earlier this year revealed that 56% had experienced some unemployment since graduating.

"In addition, a quarter of graduates we spoke to said they were in non-graduate level jobs, making it even harder for other young people to find work."

Robin Parker, president of the National Union of Students in Scotland, said the increase in the number of graduates in permanent employment, but added: "These statistics also indicate we're still not getting employability right in Scotland.

"Graduate unemployment of any level represents a huge waste of talent, and the number of graduates in permanent employment finding graduate-level jobs has essentially remained static.

"When graduates are employed in non-graduate level jobs, it squeezes out those without qualifications. That is problem that needs to be addressed if we are to tackle the overall problem of high youth unemployment."

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