Do Graduates Need to Move to London?
22nd September 2015
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Apparently there are now only 29 homes in the whole of London that are deemed affordable for first time buyers: is moving to London after university the only way to get the job of your dreams? London is, after all, a wonderful city filled with opportunities and more career options than anywhere else - or so thousands of graduates every year are led to believe. According to new research, London has more graduates in employment than anywhere else, with 53% of the work force holiding a degree. However, what those statistics don't take into account is whether or not those graduates are working in their desired career field, whether or not they're over qualified for the jobs they are doing, or whether or not these graduates are progressing in their work. The crowded and competitive reality of 20% of British graduates moving to London means they often have to resort to desperate measures as rents soar. According to the Office of National Statistics, in 2012, London had the highest concentration of graduates in any region of the UK. An estimated 60% of the residents of inner London were graduates and 45% of the residents of outer London were graduates. This intense concentration of qualified and skilled young people all in one place, all competing for the same jobs leaves chances of climbing your chosen career ladder even slimmer. As a result many grads turn to unpaid internships as a means of demonstrating passion and drive within their sector, hoping and praying that they will reap the benefits later on. However, with so many doing them it isn't possible for everyone to feel the benefits and climb the greasy pole, and according to a poll conducted by The Guardian, 67% of unpaid interns felt exploited or undervalued. The added problem with unpaid internships is that not everyone is in a position to even take one on. Being able to work for free requires financial income from a second source (be that parents or second jobs) and as this YouGov Survey shows, 39% of people who were offered an internship had to turn it down because they were not able to work for free. Also, the influx of graduates in London leads to overcrowding, which in turn leads to problems with housing. As a results sofa surfing has seen a rise in recent years, as young grads face the financial constraints of living in a city where 'rents are so high you have to share a bed with a stranger'. Surely there must be other options than the capital city?
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