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[Editorial] Unemployed College Graduates Produced by Policy Failure

[Editorial] Unemployed College Graduates Produced by Policy Failure

Posted November. 01, 2001 09:01,   


It worries us all that most college student who will graduate next February are expected to take their first step towards the society unemployed as business firms have cut down sharply the new employment of college graduate personnel, that the unemployment problem of the highly educated may be followed by the insecurity of society. The competition ratio recorded an average of over 100 to 1 at the employment tests for college graduates conducted by private and public business firms in the second half of the year, meaning that a college graduate can get a job as hardly as one can search a needle at a sandy beach.

The primary task of the government is to promote the welfare of people, and its key is to provide enough jobs. But as a result of the government`s failure in economic and educational policies, the unemployment problem of the highly educated was seriously aggravated.

Traditionally, it was a large enterprise that offered a large number of jobs to the highly educated. The current government restrained the large enterprises` branching out into new business operations and tried to find a way of recovering economy in venture firms

at the beginning of its term. But as the bubble was removed from them, the venture firms have been striving hard for downsizing rather than producing more job opportunities. Even though the government is making a belated turn to the starting point by easing the restriction on the conglomerates` equity in subsidiaries, but surrounding conditions including world economy have become too bad to promote new business operations.

The phenomenon that firms strive to transfer their production lines to China and South Asian countries because of more restrictions and less supports from the government has become a main reason for the reduction of jobs. Even though it is hard to keep the production lines from moving to the regions of low land prices and wages, the more the production lines move overseas, the less job opportunities will there be in the nation. China, to which many Korean firms move their production lines recently, supports foreign investment firms progressively in terms of land, tax and electricity. In order to encourage the firms to create more jobs the government should ease restrictions and establish a good environment for doing business.

Qualitative imbalance between the techniques taught in college education and those required by industry is serious as well. The college quota has increased so sharply that most high-school graduates are now able to enter the college, but the colleges are not providing the enough number of expert personnel needed by industry. Even though the Ministry of Education and Human Resources has emerged, whose minister is concurrently Deputy Prime Minister, it has not provided any supply and demand programs for the highly educated good enough to encompass the cultivation of the able and educational policy.

It must be the government`s primary task to find work for 700,000 young people, including the next year`s 250,000 four-year university graduates, 220,000 junior college graduates and those job-searchers. The society in which a number of highly educated young people start their life unemployed is not healthy at all.