Supporting graduates to stay and thrive in Yorkshire benefits the region - Liz Mossop & Karen Bryan

New data released this week shows that almost 80 per cent of UK graduates were in high-skilled jobs just over a year after they graduated, with 84 per cent of those asked saying they found their employment to be meaningful.

It also showed that two thirds, 66 per cent, of graduates in employment were earning more than £27,000 just 15 months after graduation, a 13 percentage point increase compared to those graduating in 2021.

Providing opportunities for graduates to stay and thrive in Yorkshire and contribute to the region’s economic success is vital.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

It benefits employers who want and need access to a skilled and diverse workforce, it benefits the regional economy, and everyone who lives here, and the graduates themselves.

Professor Liz Mossop is vice-chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University.Professor Liz Mossop is vice-chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University.
Professor Liz Mossop is vice-chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University.

The new Government is prioritising growth across the UK, in an effort to make it realise the potential of all regions, to make our economy less reliant on London and to generate the extra investment that public services need.

This is certainly true for Yorkshire - we want Yorkshire employers to access the benefits that our graduates bring.

That’s why we’re bringing together leaders from our 12 universities, councils, mayoral combined authorities, employers and organisations who are all invested in supporting graduate employment in our region.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Today, at Sheffield Hallam University, key players from across our county will discuss how they are overcoming challenges, creating opportunities and developing solutions together to enable graduates to stay, thrive and contribute to our growing economy across the region.

Led by Yorkshire Universities, the mission group that represents the region’s universities, this collaborative approach can help to improve graduate employment and support the regional economy.

By strengthening links between education, employability, enterprise and employment at a regional level we are addressing skills needs and helping to overcome geographical inequalities.

As well as the groups it convenes, Yorkshire Universities is leading specific actions that are designed to make it easier for employers to understand what universities can offer, and the ways in which businesses and the public sector can engage with a diverse pool of student and graduate talent.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

One example of this is the publication of a new version of our inclusive recruitment guide, which aims to support employers in accessing our highly skilled graduates from across the region.

Produced by university employability experts, the guide provides employers with practical advice to recruiting more diverse students including international students and those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

This will ensure that a wider pool of talent as possible is accessed and connected into job opportunities.

There is certainly a need for the skilled graduates our universities produce - by 2035, more than 11 million extra graduates, in addition to the 15.3 million graduates currently in the UK workforce, will be needed to fill jobs in the UK in industries such as computing and engineering, teaching and education, and health.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

It is vital therefore, that we work with businesses, local government and organisations across our region to ensure some of this growth of graduate jobs happens here in Yorkshire, as well as ensuring our graduates can access these opportunities.

Universities meanwhile recognise the need to support graduate employability as well as broader student success and numerous successful programmes have shown how collaboration in this space helps students and businesses to thrive.

Take the RISE programme in Sheffield for example, which helped to connect more than 450 talented graduates from the region with small and medium sized enterprises.

Over the last five years the programme generated gross value added of £22.3m and a return on investment £19.10 for every £1 spent.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Sheffield Hallam University is also home to the iLab, a dynamic co-working space for entrepreneurs to network and collaborate. The university also provides one-to-one business advice to help businesses to grow and capitalise on opportunities.

There is already a huge amount of existing work across the region in this area but there remains an ongoing role for Yorkshire Universities to continue to improve coordination and collaboration in this space.

Yorkshire is a region with huge potential and organisations from across our cities and towns need to work together to ensure we can realise that potential with our graduates leading the charge.

Professor Liz Mossop is vice-chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University and Professor Karen Byran OBE is vice-chancellor of York St John University and chair of Yorkshire Universities.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.