Higher education took a bit of a battering last year. The systems of fees and funding changed dramatically while the economy shuddered and the employment market shook, raising new concerns for both students and their parents. Twelve months on, the dust has settled ”” but do parents have any idea what student life looks like today?
“Many think back to when they were undergraduates. The situation today is unrecognisably different,” says Danny Byrne, editor of topuniversities.com. “In those days, 10 to 15 per cent of school-leavers went to university and tended to waltz into jobs at the end of it. Today, there’s a mass influx of graduates into the job market and it’s getting tougher to distinguish yourself, so parents feel they need to provide more hands-on direction.”
The university experience has changed too. Byrne says the focus has shifted from fun and study to employability and study, with students grabbing every possible opportunity to gain work experience and build networks.