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Brexit fears double for new graduates

More than half of students expected to graduate this year have little to no idea of what they will be doing in the next six months

Posted by Rebecca Paddick | May 31, 2017 | Students

Latest research insights from Magnet.me, the website which connects students with graduate employers, reveals the views of the graduating students in 2017 on job prospects, Brexit and the General Election. 

Brexit fears have doubled in the minds of 2017 graduates since the start of year. When polled in January a third (36%) flagged Brexit as the greatest concern in securing employment, this is now up to almost two-thirds (65%).

More than half (54%) of students expected to graduate this year have little to no idea of what they will be doing in in the next six months, with the majority (57%) ‘considering’ or ‘very likely’ to join the gig economy. Only a fifth (19%) of students indicated they know exactly what they will be doing in the coming months, with most (60%) entering working life.  

Whilst a vast majority of the new crop of graduates are uncertain about their immediate future, seven out 10 (71%) felt that they would be more optimistic about securing a job in 2017 if the Labour party came into power. Only 16% polled felt a Conservative party government would be an encouraging sign for their job prospects.

The growing uncertainty around handling Brexit negotiations and the potential outcomes of the general election have clearly compounded job fears for graduates entering the workforce

The issue of immigration has dominated the Brexit debate, but the majority of 2017 graduates (54%) remain indifferent to any curbs in immigration on their hopes of securing employment. Only one in 20 (5%) were confident that they were more likely to get a job with tighter immigration rules.

Over a third of students (38%) polled were confident and optimistic that manifesto pledges (Labour and Green Party) to remove tuition fees would become a reality. The vast majority (54%) felt it was uncertain and unsure either Labour of the Greens would actually deliver on this pledge.

Vincent Karremans, Founder of Magnet.me commented: “At the start of the year, two-thirds of students were optimistic about getting a job this year, six months later more than half have lost hope. The growing uncertainty around handling Brexit negotiations and the potential outcomes of the general election have clearly compounded job fears for graduates entering the workforce.

“Political parties and companies alike are not doing enough to allay the fears of the next batch of graduates. Electioneering encompasses a wide range of issues and it seems student, despite their doubts about abolition of tuition fees becoming a reality, are favouring a Labour government when it comes securing employment.”

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