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More unemployed graduates 6 months after leaving university in 2022: Survey

But median gross monthly salary among fresh graduates in full-time permanent jobs rose.

Chinese graduates in caps and gowns looking up and smile.
There was an increase in the number of fresh graduates in Singapore who remained unemployed within 6 months of finishing their final exam, according to the 2022 graduate employment survey. (PHOTO: Getty) (FangXiaNuo via Getty Images)

SINGAPORE — There were more graduates who remained unemployed for six months after their final exam in 2022, compared to the year before.

The latest graduate employment survey results released on Monday (20 February) show that the proportion of such graduates increased from 5.6 per cent in 2021 to 6.2 per cent in 2022.

The 2022 Joint Autonomous Universities Graduate Employment Survey was conducted by the National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore Management University (SMU) and Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS) and involved about 12,100 graduates who were surveyed on their employment status six months after completing their final examinations.


Overall, the proportion of fresh graduates who had found employment at the time the survey was conducted fell slightly from 94.4 per cent in 2021 to 93.8 per cent in 2022.

More full-time work

However, more university graduates secured full-time permanent positions, with an increase of 87.5 per cent in 2022 from 84 per cent in 2021 for this category.

There were also fewer graduates in the part-time or temporary work category, falling from 8.7 per cent in 2021 to 4.5 per cent in 2022. Meanwhile, the number of freelancers among fresh graduates increased only slightly from 1.7 per cent in 2021 to 1.8 per cent in 2022.

The 2022 survey also showed that the median gross monthly salary among fresh graduates in full-time permanent jobs rose from S$3,800 in 2021 to S$4,200 in 2022.

Median salaries increased in multiple course clusters, including in business, engineering, health sciences, and humanities and social sciences. The median salary for the information and digital technologies course cluster jumped significantly from S$5,000 in 2021 to S$5,625 in 2022.

Monthly median salaries for the dentistry, and arts, design and media course clusters remained unchanged in 2022 at S$4,200 and S$3,500, respectively.

A follow-up survey on 2019, 2020, and 2021 graduates also showed increased monthly median salaries in 2022 for graduates from the architecture, law, medicine, pharmacy, and biomedical sciences and Chinese medicine course clusters.

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