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Graduates driving growth

In response to the results from the HESA Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey out today, Libby Hackett, Director of University Alliance, said:

“This is great news for graduates and for the economy with today’s survey showing an increase in employment for 2009/10 graduates.  Along with the findings from the Association of Graduate Recruiters earlier in the week that graduate level job vacancies and starting salaries are on the up, it looks like an increasingly positive picture for graduates.

“There is a widely held view that we have too many graduates in the UK and that demand for graduates will dry up. However, there is extensive evidence showing us that it will be innovative, high-tech business that will grow the UK economy. These industries will require more high-end, innovative, creative graduates – those who will create new jobs, not replace old ones.

“We face considerable longer-term challenges as a country, including the implications of the ‘hourglass’ projection for the future shape of the labour market. The Coalition Government’s current emphasis on apprenticeships and intermediate-level skills will create a skills base that is more pear-shaped than hourglass. With 41 per cent of all UK jobs already based in the knowledge-intensive sectors, a figure that is rapidly rising, we would urge them to reconsider their vision”

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Contact: Sam Jones 07767 673 982 or

Notes to Editors

Examples of a different approach to graduate employability:

Alliance universities maintain a revolving door with business to help ensure graduate employers get innovative and thoughtful graduates with the right skills to help grow their businesses –

  • Nottingham Trent University is one of the top ten universities in England and Wales for graduate employment with nearly 95% of its students in employment or further study six months after graduating.
  • Northumbria University has had more than 200 business start-ups in the past 5 years.
  • Liverpool John Moores University’s World of Work (WoW) initiative aims to ensure that every student is equipped with the skills they need to stand out from the crowd and successfully engage in the world of work, either because they possess skills which are highly valued by employers or because they are well equipped to set themselves up in their own business.
  • University of Hertfordshire does not have a career advisory service but an employability centre, matching employer’s needs with student’s skills. They also support professional development for graduates.

About University Alliance

University Alliance is a group of 23 major, business-engaged universities committed to delivering world-class research and a quality student experience around the UK. They are universities without boundaries: delivering economic and social growth through close links with their research, students and staff and the world around them – locally, nationally and internationally. With representation right across the UK they educate over 25% of all UK students, with large proportions of international and post-graduate students.

Alliance universities

Aberystwyth University, Bournemouth University, University of Bradford, De Montfort University, University of Glamorgan, Glasgow Caledonian University, University of Hertfordshire, University of Huddersfield, University of Lincoln, Liverpool John Moores University, Manchester Metropolitan University, Northumbria University, Nottingham Trent University, Open University, Oxford Brookes University, University of Plymouth, University of Portsmouth, University of Salford, Sheffield Hallam University, Teesside University, University of Wales Institute, Cardiff, University of Wales, Newport, University of the West of England.


Media enquiries

Contact Beth Button, Head of communications and public affairs.

Phone: 07756155056.