Related News

Home » Metro » Education

Fresh grads struggle for jobs amid tough times

TINA Yang, a senior student majoring in economics at Shanghai Institute of Foreign Trade, is now desperately sending out resumes in an attempt to find a job before she graduates in June.

As a student at a second-tier school, she knew she'd have trouble competing against those with degrees from the likes of Fudan and Jiao Tong universities, so she has worked as an intern ever since her freshman year.

Yang thought she was all set when a multinational consumer goods company promised her a job after graduation. But that offer fell through due to the world financial downturn, and now Yang is scrambling for employment in a market already crowded with bright young people who are trying to start their careers.

The grim situation was summed up at an educational forum yesterday.

Wang Xiping, director of the student affairs division of the Shanghai Education Commission, forecast that only 70 percent of this year's senior students will have landed a job, been accepted by a graduate school, signed up for overseas studies or started their own business by the time they finish university.

In comparison, 77 percent of last year's graduates were similarly fixed by June, officials said at a seminar on the transition from school to work held at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences.

"The economic crisis has worsened the long-existing unemployment problem caused by the enrollment expansion policy," said Yang Xiong, a SASS official.

Benefiting from a program to increase higher-education opportunities, 158,000 students will finish college in Shanghai this year, up 6 percent from last year.

Student rolls rise

About 60 percent of local residents age 18 to 22 are attending college today while only 38.8 percent did so in 2000.

Nationwide, the student rolls are even larger. China expects 6.1 million fresh university graduates this year, compared with last year's 5.5 million. Making matters worse, 1 million students who graduated in 2008 are still unemployed.

The situation is so bad that 10,000 high school seniors in Chongqing said they wouldn't even take the college entrance exam because they figure a degree will do them no good in getting a job.

Education experts point out that when it comes to securing employment, not all degrees are created equal. There's a surplus of graduates in some majors, such as business and education. But other disciplines provide a faster track to a pay packet.

The Shanghai University of Engineering Science's air pilot major and its Urban Rail Traffic Institute report 100 percent employment rates as jobs are plentiful in the growing field of transportation.

Education authorities are now working with colleges to guide them on developing more individualized programs, introducing vocational training courses and helping students find jobs in suburban communities or in China's west.

Shanghai government plans to recruit 1,027 college graduates to work as rural teachers, rural doctors or to serve communities in 10 suburban districts, the Shanghai Human Resources and Social Security Bureau said yesterday. Grants and other incentives are also provided to qualified young entrepreneurs under the new employment program targeting graduates.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend