April 6, 2006
ONE IN FOUR COLLEGE GRADUATES THIS YEAR WILL BE JOBLESS
At least one in four college students who graduate this year will be unable to find jobs, according to independent think-tank IBON Foundation.
Figures from the Commission on Higher Education show that there will be some 447,847 college graduates for school year 2005-2006. But the January 2006 Labor Force Survey shows that only 98,000 wage and salary jobs were created during the survey period, as opposed to own-account and unpaid family work.
According to research head Sonny Africa, majority of the graduates who can't find employment here may opt to work abroad. But according to Philippine Overseas Employment Administration estimates, there are only some 250,000 new hires of overseas Filipino workers annually.
Applying these trends into 2006 means this year's graduates will be competing for only some 348,000 jobs, and nearly 100,000 graduates may be unable to find work, he said.
Just as bad, those graduates who do find work may have to settle for jobs below their educational qualifications, Africa added. He pointed out that only some 20%-30% of either wage and salary jobs or overseas employment could be said to require college-level skills, hence most of our graduates may work at jobs below their credentials, and may even earn far below what should be expected of their level of education.
The difficulty local graduates have in finding rewarding jobs highlights not only the failure of the Arroyo administration to meet its self-set employment generation targets, but the bankruptcy of its economic policies as well. (end)