Career Developmemt Association of Australia says students need to gain employable skills

Career Developmemt Association of Australia says students need to gain employable skills

HIGHER education students need to gain employable skills before graduating to secure work after study.

The advice comes from the Career Development Association of Australia at a time of rising unemployment in Western Australia.

A new study by the National Institute of Labour Studies titled Has the graduate job market been swamped? shows job prospects for graduates are in decline.

Most recent data indicates 67 per cent of graduates were in full-time employment four to six months after completing study, while university enrolments numbers continue to rise.

“In a tough labour market with growing numbers of graduates, it’s clear the new reality is that a degree alone does not get you a job,” CDAA vice-president Wanda Hayes said.

“University students now need to do more than just study, with employers having the luxury in this competitive market to select from a wide field of graduates.”

CDAA advocates a stronger focus on what attributes and experience graduates should have to help secure a job.

“We know graduate employment numbers have been steadily declining since 2009, so the question now is what do those graduates have that the others don’t,” Ms Hayes said.

CDAA members who work with university students have identified graduates who gain work experience while studying as more likely to get jobs.

“This experience could include work on real-life projects, as well as internships and placements, or part-time work to demonstrate an ability to take direction and work,” she said.

“Involvement in extra-curricular activities also helps to show interests beyond study and an ability to create work-life balance.”

CDAA also recommended university students seek advice from on-campus career specialists for guidance in gaining employable skills and experience.