The Ministry of Business and Innovation’s new 150-page Occupations Outlook 2016 document tells students little that is useful says TEU national president Sandra Grey.
“It is no surprise to learn that hospitality workers have low-income prospects, that pharmacists face high study fees and bus drivers have good job prospects.”
“It’s not news just because the minister has put it on a mobile app,” say Grey.
Tertiary education minister Steven Joyce says the fourth annual Occupation Outlook report contains information to help job seekers and students make good study and career decisions.
Grey says the information is useful in a limited way but students should not frame their life around it.
“Learn about the things that make you excited, because that’s what will allow you to learn the job skills or knowledge you will need later in life.”
“Employment and income prospects come afterwards,” says Grey.
Grey also says because a particular career has poor employment prospects does not mean that we do not need those people.
“This year’s report rates the job prospects for firefighters poorly. Surely we are not discouraging people from becoming firefighters?”
Grey also says because the report only lists 60 occupations it misses out many other important occupations, such as social work.
“Furthermore, the report lacks any gender analysis, or ethnic or socio-economic analysis. The reason many jobs pay the way they do is not because of workforce demands or some force of nature, it is because we make a decision to pay women, Māori and people from poorer backgrounds less money.”
Grey says the information in the report is one of the things for students to consider but if people really are worrying about how much they will earn in the future they should join a union – because that will have more positive effect on rates of pay and conditions of work.
Thanks to Ari Bakker for the photo https://www.flickr.com/photos/aribakker/213584281