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Booze and partying take backseat for next gen students

Research reveals students are approaching university with career aspirations firmly in mind

Posted by Rebecca Paddick | August 05, 2017 | Students

A survey of more than 1,000 16 to 18-year-olds, conducted by Leeds Beckett University, reveals what students hope to achieve from university. 

Breaking stereotypes of boozy late nights and lie-ins, one in five revealed “progressing my career” was their top priority, and 29% of students said, “studying a subject I’m passionate about” was the main thing they were looking forward to. 

Less than one in 10 (9%) revealed it was “nightlife” and “living in the city” that excited them most about university life. The poll also provides insight into student’s concerns about embarking on university life. Over a quarter (26%) fear they’ll not make friends and will feel lonely. This was closely followed by anxieties of budgeting (20%) and ‘not coping with the demands of the course’ (17%).  In addition, only 13% of those questioned were worried about ‘not enjoying their course’, with just 11% concerned about ‘missing home’.

Value for money and teaching excellent must be a priority, but it’s vital that students are prepared for the challenges that lie ahead and these cannot all be solved with a good degree

The study also revealed almost half of those questioned (47%) have been offered incentives to revise and do well in exams by their family. So it’s little surprise that nearly a quarter (23%) believe they will get higher grades than predicted. 

Chris Watts, Director of University Recruitment at Leeds Beckett, said: “We have seen this trend develop in recent years where students have very different priorities to those from years gone by; they are highly career driven, arriving on campus with a clear attitude of wanting to study hard to land their dream job. 

“It’s important to strike a balance, however, and we often see that the most successful graduates have successfully combined a commitment to their studies with work experience and extra-curricular activities.

“Value for money and teaching excellent must be a priority, but it’s vital that students are prepared for the challenges that lie ahead and these cannot all be solved with a good degree. We work closely with employers and partners to ensure that our graduates are ready for work, ready for life, and ready to seize the opportunities that lie ahead.” 

STUDENTS’ BIGGEST CONCERN ABOUT STARTING UNI?

  • Not making friends/being lonely – 26.3%
  • Budgeting – 19.7%
  • Not coping with demands of course – 16.7%
  • Not enjoying course – 13%
  • Missing home 11.4%
  • Fending for myself 8.7%

WHAT STUDENTS ARE MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO:

  • Studying a subject I’m passionate about – 29%
  • Progressing career – 20%
  • Making new friends – 18%
  • Moving away from home – 15%
  • Being in the city – 9%
  • Nightlife – 9%

WHO HAS GIVEN MOST USEFUL ADVICE ON WHICH UNIVERSITY TO CHOOSE?

  • Parents – 34.5%
  • Teachers – 18.5%
  • Nobody – 10.7%
  • Online forums - 5.7%
  • Friends - 5.2%

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