SINGAPORE — More than five in ten Singaporean graduates end up pursuing careers unrelated to their degrees, a new study has found.
Findings released on Thursday (3 October) from a study by UK-based research firm YouGov, however, showed that the results are not universal across the board.
The study polled 646 Singaporean graduates via YouGov’s Omnibus online research service in September.
For instance, those who studied in fields such as accounting and finance are more likely to end up working in a related field (70 per cent), compared with those who specialised in business, administration and law (27 per cent).
Other factors likely to affect whether someone moves into a job related to their degree include the place of education and age, the study reported.
Those who studied abroad (51 per cent) were more likely to work in jobs related to their degrees, as compared to those who studied locally (45 per cent). This despite the fact that only 29 per cent of respondents studied abroad.
Older Singaporeans, aged 55 and above, are also more likely than than their younger compatriots, aged 25 to 34, to work in jobs relevant to their degree (54 per cent versus 42 per cent).
The study also found that close to six in ten (57 per cent) Singaporeans find their degrees “very useful” – four in ten find them “somewhat useful”, while the remaining four per cent find them “useless”.
Those who studied information and communications technology are more likely to think of their degrees as very useful compared to those who studied science and mathematics (72 per cent versus 43 per cent).
Almost all (99 per cent) graduates agree that having a university degree is important.
When asked to assume the position of an employer, one in seven reported that they would be unwilling to hire someone without a university degree, with half (53 per cent) willing to and the remaining one-third thinking the degree “makes no difference”.
“For those currently figuring out which field of study to go into, it could be comforting to know that it might be unrelated to one’s future career,” said Jake Gammon, Head of Omnibus APAC at YouGov Omnibus.
“No matter what field of study, almost all graduates agree a university degree is important, and a significant percentage would be unwilling to hire someone without one.”
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