Most recent university grads in Maritimes feeling impact of pandemic at work, survey finds

·2 min read
The class of 2018 had a higher unemployment rate than classes surveyed in previous years. (Mark Felix/The Orange County Register/Associated Press - image credit)
The class of 2018 had a higher unemployment rate than classes surveyed in previous years. (Mark Felix/The Orange County Register/Associated Press - image credit)

More than 50 per cent of members of the class of 2018 that graduated from Maritime universities have had their jobs affected by the pandemic, according to a survey by the Maritime Provinces Higher Education Commission.

The survey found 55 per cent of the bachelor degree graduates had had their employment situation affected.

The survey was conducted from Sept. 16 to Dec. 11, 2020.

The survey also found those graduates had a higher unemployment rate than what was found by similar MPHEC surveys, taken two years after graduations, of the classes of 2012 and 2014.

"Maritimers are experiencing significant challenges because of the COVID-19 pandemic and recent university graduates are no exception," said commission CEO Catherine Stewart in a news release.

"The increase in the class of 2018 unemployment rate compared to previous graduating classes can be tied to the pandemic."

Among the 2018 class, 14 per cent reported being unemployed. Of those, 60 per cent said their employment situation was not pandemic related. Of the class of 2012 eight per cent were unemployed and nine per cent in the class of 2014.

The results from each of the three Maritime provinces were largely the same, but they did vary by what degree they left university with.

Commerce and administration graduates were least likely to be affected, with 54 per cent reporting no impact. They were also most likely to be working more, with 18 per cent reporting that.

Humanities, arts and social sciences graduates were most affected, with only 36 per cent reporting no impact. Only 12 per cent reported they were working more.

The survey reached 2,437 first degree holders and results are considered to have a margin of error of 2.0 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

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