Tuesday 27 September 2016

Comment: Graduates get good news, but more to do

Published 03/05/2016 | 02:30

It is good news for students, good news for their parents and good news for society. Stock photo: PA
It is good news for students, good news for their parents and good news for society. Stock photo: PA

The improving economy is delivering concrete results for Irish graduates. More of them are getting work, and more of them are walking into jobs at home.

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It is good news for students, good news for their parents and good news for society.

The years after the 2008 crash saw an outflow of well-educated, talented youth from Ireland, and heart-breaking scenes at airports as families were torn apart.

It is great for Ireland and its graduates that they see they world. Indeed, it is essential in the global economy that they experience and learn from other cultures. Some will choose to stay away, others will return, the richer for it in terms of outlook and ideas.

But, enforced emigration, because of a lack of jobs at home, is a black mark on an economy, one that everyone hopes will be erased completely, and as soon as possible,

Notwithstanding high employment rates for healthcare graduates in Ireland, the report reveals that it is one of the areas with a higher than average level of overseas working among the class of 2014. This at a time when hospitals are crying out for staff and recruiting overseas. There has been plenty of anecdotal evidence that many Irish healthcare graduates, such as nurses and doctors, are choosing not to work in the Irish health system.

Newly-qualified teachers also have high employment rates in Ireland, but many of them, at second-level, are on very low hours, a likely contributory factor to many of them taking a decision to go overseas to work.

The hope is that, over the next few years, subsequent reports will show an even rosier picture for graduates, but that will involve creating not only the conditions for more employment, but ensuring they are jobs that graduates want.     

Irish Independent

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