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Does working while studying influence graduate employability?

Antonio Di Paolo and Alessia Matano, AQR-IREA, University of Barcelona
Project selected in the Call to support social research projects: vocational training, early school leaving and job insecurity

This research analyses the effect that working while studying for their degree has on the subsequent labour market performance of university graduates, using different databases covering graduates from Catalan universities and from the whole Spain. Within the framework of the research, pre-graduation jobs are classified according to work intensity (part-time and full-time) and their relationship with the field of study. As for post-graduation labour market outcomes, it has been considered employment and job quality, namely having a permanent contract and working in a job that requires that specific degree.
Key points
  • 1
       Combining university education with work activities is quite common among recent graduates from Spanish universities.
  • 2
       Pre-graduation work activities are not always rewarded in the graduate labour market, because the relationship between the job and the degree’s content matters.
  • 3
       Working while studying improves the employability of Spanish university graduates when pre-graduation jobs are related to their degree subject.
  • 4
       Graduates who had jobs unrelated to their degree’s content face a higher risk of mismatch in the labour market after graduation.
Working while studying does influence graduate employability
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Pre-graduation work activities and labour market outcomes of graduates from Catalan universities (estimated differences in employability based on working status during their degree course, relative to full-time students).

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