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Student job figures surprisingly healthy

MORE than 70 percent of this year's graduating students have landed a job, been accepted by a graduate school, signed up for overseas studies or started their own business, education authorities said yesterday.

The figure is almost the same as last year and much better than previous expectation, said Wang Qi, vice director of the Shanghai Education Commission.

Some universities, such as Shanghai Jiao Tong University, have reported higher numbers than last year. But some vocational colleges specializing in finance and languages have reported up to a 10 percent decrease in employment figures for this year's students.

The average salary of fresh graduates is expected to decrease while the income difference among different jobs for graduates will continue to grow, Wang said.

About 158,000 students will graduate from college in Shanghai this year, up 6 percent from last year.

However, companies reported fewer job vacancies for fresh graduates due to the economic crisis.

The balance has been achieved by graduates opting for different types of jobs, officials said.

"An increase in grass-roots posts such as village officials has offset the decrease of posts at foreign companies and in some popular industries," Wang said.

He said he is pleased that the job shortage has encouraged graduates to think about jobs in second-tier cities and rural areas instead of competing against each other for posts at foreign firms in coastal cities.

The information came at a meeting held at the China-Europe International Business School yesterday.

Last year, 77 percent of graduates had secured work or further study by the end of July. The number jumped to 91.6 percent by October 20.


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