Most graduates not prepared

Two in three businesses believe that Greece’s university graduates have not been prepared adequately to enter the labor market, according to the results of a study seen by Sunday’s Kathimerini. The study, to be presented on Wednesday by the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP), shows that 67 percent of businesses believe that the graduates who are entering the market are ill-equipped for the tasks ahead. Bad management, intervention by political parties and a lack of proper research efforts have contributed to this poor record, according to ELIAMEP. «The crucial question is not only how much money is poured into education but what is done with it,» the study said. «The negative balance between quantity and quality is directly connected to the way universities operate and to the irrational use of funds,» it added. Greece ranks low among OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) countries in terms of funds allocated to education as a percentage of gross domestic product. Only 3.6 percent of businesses surveyed said that students are well prepared for the job market by their university, while 29 percent are seen to be «fairly well» prepared to take on the job. University infrastructure remains well behind that at other European universities, with local tertiary institutions even further behind in the field of digital technology. «Larger university autonomy is needed, greater competition between them and a systematic review of what the universities produce is needed in combination with a large increase in the funds allocated to university education,» the study added. Greece is the only country in the European Union that does not have an independent review system of its tertiary sector. There are some bright spots in the field but they are difficult to discern. «Greek universities offer islets of quality and scientists that have excelled internationally. They are the exception to the rule,» ELIAMEP added.

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