University of Oulu graduates are well employed
Some 94% of graduates who completed master’s degrees at the University of Oulu in 2015 and 83% of those who completed doctoral degrees in 2017 are in employment. The figures are based on a career monitoring survey conducted in autumn 2020.
The response rate was 41.6% among those who completed master’s degrees at the University of Oulu in 2015 and 44% among those who completed doctoral degrees in 2017. The annual national career monitoring survey monitors the integration of graduates into working life, their career development and satisfaction with the degree.
Career monitoring survey 2021 ongoing for graduates from 2016
The target group of the 2021 survey comprises those alumni who completed a higher university degree, a Bachelor of Arts in Education, a Licentiate of Medicine degree or a Licentiate of Dentistry degree in 2016 and those who completed a doctoral degree in 2018. The graduates will be approached in October and November through text messages or letters, and the survey will remain open until 13 December 2021. Read more about the ongoing survey.
Master’s degrees help find work in municipal sector, doctoral degrees at universities
Of those with master’s degrees from the University of Oulu, 62% have permanent full-time jobs and 21% have fixed-term full-time jobs. Doctoral degrees resulted in similar rates of employment: 50% have permanent full-time jobs and 33% fixed-term full-time jobs. Moreover, 75% of those with doctoral degrees and 85% of those with master’s degrees said they were performing work corresponding to their level of education.
Only 3% of those with master’s degrees have started a business or are otherwise self-employed. As many as 46% declared their main employer to be the municipal sector, and 35% work for a private employer. “There is a clear increase from the 2019 results. Most of those who completed master’s degrees in 2014 worked in private companies and only about a third in the municipal sector,” says Outi Tolonen, Project Manager at the University of Oulu. The university is the biggest employer of doctors, with 39%, and the second biggest is the private sector, with 28%.
Salaries have fallen from the previous year. The median gross salary of those with master’s degrees was €3,700, whereas in the 2019 survey it was €3,500. The median gross salary of those with doctoral degrees fell from the previous year’s €4,300 to €4,000.
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on graduates was also examined in the 2020 career monitoring survey, but the impact was limited. Due to the pandemic, the number of layoffs rose momentarily in May 2020, but the situation recovered somewhat by October.
Studies support careers
Some 88% of those with master’s degrees and 84% of those with doctoral degrees from the University of Oulu were satisfied with their degree in terms of their career.
“I am very satisfied with my degree, which has given both certainty and impetus in working life and employment, and not a single minor subject seems to have been wasted. I have been able to use the full potential of the degree in working life and have benefited from its versatility,” one respondent stated in the open-ended feedback.
In the open-ended feedback, those with master’s degrees appreciated the good basis for working life provided by education, but also emphasised that the profound mastery of the profession only develops through the experience gained in working life. The most important skills required in working life, for which academic studies were also considered to have provided capabilities, were the ability to learn and absorb new things, initiative, cooperative skills, resilience to stress and information acquisition skills. According to the survey respondents, the skills working life requires the least are communication in languages other than Finnish and entrepreneurial skills.
- The results of the previous years’ career monitoring surveys can be found in the Vipunen information service.
- The national results for 2020 were published 15 October 2021 and can be found on the website of the University of Jyväskylä. The publication is in Finnish including a summary in English.