News Column

Female Grads Get More Jobs

JulY 12, 2011

Among those who graduated from universities this past spring, 66.4 percent of women found full-time employment, surpassing 57.7 percent of new male graduates who secured regular work, according to a recent Yomiuri Shimbun survey.

It is the first survey result to show the percentage of new graduates, broken down by gender, who found regular employment.

The survey showed that women tend to make more realistic choices than men, not restricting themselves to their first-choice companies, but rather looking for jobs patiently.

According to the survey, 61.5 percent of all new graduates found regular work, down 0.1 point from a similar survey in the previous year.

Both male and female graduates from home economics-related departments, including human life and health sciences, fared well.

Although the actual number of male graduates from home economics-related faculties was small, 67.5 percent of them have found regular jobs, second to male graduates of social science-related departments at 67.8 percent.

Among newly graduated females, 71.6 percent of those from home economics-related departments found regular jobs, following those from medical and dental faculties at 80.5 percent. As most graduates from the medical and dental departments are usually employed for training at a clinic after graduation for a set period of time, females from the former category hold the de facto top position.

By mid-June, major companies had almost finished hiring new graduates for fiscal 2012.

However, more than 100 students gathered at a job fair hosting about 30 companies in a hall at Chuo University in Hachioji, Tokyo.

Most of them were female students in black skirts and jackets.

"I wanted to work in 'sogoshoku' (career position) in a financial company as my top priority. But now I'm not sticking to sogoshoku, and want to take a look at companies in other industries. Small and midsize companies are also acceptable," a 21-year-old female senior student in the economics department of the university said.

Another 21-year-old female senior student in the commerce department said, "I want to get an informal appointment, even in the 'ippanshoku' [nonmanagerial position] category."

Yukio Tonomura, head of the career development center at Chuo University, said: "Women are enthusiastic about finding a job, and they also have a flexible way of thinking. They had a more difficult time finding jobs [than men], so they haven't given up even at this time of the year."

A similar situation has been seen at other universities.

A female senior student from the literature department of the University of Tokyo initially wanted to work in an advertising company, but she decided to look for a job among manufacturers.

Continuing the trend, a 22-year-old female senior in the humanities and economics department of Kochi University sought a sogoshoku job. However, she finally got an informal appointment after expanding her choices by including the ippanshoku category.

"I wanted to find a job before my graduation (next spring) anyway," she said.

The Yomiuri survey results show that more newly graduated females have obtained regular employment than male graduates.

The persistence and flexibility of female graduates have been remarkable.

According to Keiko Hirano, a researcher at Bunkahoso Career Partners' job information research center, "Women tend to think they should avoid graduating unemployed in order to seek for jobs more suitable for them. In consideration of the future possibility of marriage and childbirth, they don't want to waste time. As a result, they start looking for jobs early and seriously."

Source: Copyright (c) 2011, The Yomiuri Shimbun

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