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Wales has a proud academic history and certainly proves it can run with the rest of the UK in terms of producing highly qualified and highly skilled graduates for the working world. But we wanted to know what made graduates from Wales different to those from the rest of the UK, in terms of career ambitions, academic attainment and whether they had work experience or not.

Job title Location Salary
BAE Systems - Finance Industrial Placement Wales, North East £17,500
Hilti - Account Manager - Wales Wales Competitive + benefits
Trainee Energy Head Hunter - London/Manchester - New! London, East Midlands, West Midlands £45,000 OTE (£18 to £20,000 Basic) + OTE
Junior PHP Developer Web Programmer West Midlands 21k to 23k
Retail Graduate Scheme Decathlon - Midlands East Midlands, West Midlands competitive
Severn Trent Water - Technical Leadership – Information Systems East Midlands, West Midlands £24,625
Capgemini Technology Graduate Programme South East, London, West Midlands, Nationwide Competitive + benefits
New! Trainee Energy Headhunter - Manchester - High Earnings East Midlands, West Midlands, Nationwide £18,000 + OTE
Severn Trent Water - Business Leadership East Midlands, West Midlands £24,625
Retail Work Placement Scheme Decathlon - Midlands East Midlands, West Midlands competitive

To see whether graduates from Wales showed any major differences between themselves and the rest of the UK (rUK), we took a look at the graduates from Welsh universities between the 2009 and 2014 to see if graduates from Wales showed any remarkable difference in their attainment, ambition and employability.

Sectors

Starting by looking at their sector choices, graduates from Wales were not too different from the rest of the UK, with the top two most popular sectors being the same as the rest of the UK's. The one thing that did stand out was the proportion of the graduates from Wales who wanted to work in Management. The 36.4% of graduates who wanted to work in this particular sector was well ahead of the 28.5% national average, and proportionally much higher than any other city or part of the UK.

Most popular sectors for graduates from Welsh universities

Degree Classifications

In terms of degree classifications awarded from Welsh universities, it appears that it is much more difficult to be awarded the top mark of a First Class degree, with graduates from Wales being among the lowest in the UK. The amount of graduates who left a Welsh university with a First Class degree stood at 8.3%, much lower than the national average of 9.8%, with only Nottingham, Sheffield and Northern Ireland where an even lower percentage of graduates achieved a First.

However, graduates from Wales are nearly as likely to receive a 2.1 classification for their degree, with 48% of graduates from Wales receiving this level of degree and the national average standing at 48.1%.

Degree classifications for graduates from Welsh universities

Work Experience

Work experience is often believed to be the counter part of a graduate's degree, so that they can prove to employers they are the full package. Graduates from Wales are no exception to the problems that employers are finding. Only 15.3% of graduates from Welsh universities had work experience, although this was not that far off the national average of 16.6%. Graduates from Welsh universities are also not the worst, with Liverpool and Newcastle having even lower percentage of graduates with work experience.

% of work experience for graduates from Welsh universities

Graduate Jobs by sector in Wales
Accounting Internet / Digital Media
Advertising / Public Relations Languages
Architecture & Construction Legal & Law
Arts & Design Management
Banking Manufacturing and Production
Buying & Merchandising Marketing
Charities Media
Computing & IT Military & Defence
Consultancy Property
Customer Service Public Sector & Services
Distribution & Logistics Recruitment
Education & Teaching Research & Analysis
Energy & Utilities Retail
Engineering Sales
Environmental Science & Technology
Finance Secretarial & Business Admin
Food & Drink & Catering Sports and Recreation
Health Telecommunications
Human Resources Training
Insurance Travel & Hospitality

Shortlist

Recruiting

Recruiting now:

turnstoneHigher the TalentSpencer HarringtonGraduate FasttrackVine Graduate
FDMeonGSKAldiJust IT Training Ltdsmith williamson logo
Jeremy Gardner Assoc
explore learning
Accenture
BAE 2014
Enterprise Rent-A-Car
Softcat
London and Country Mortgages
foxtons
Schroders
RM plc
Hogan Lovell
sky graduate scheme
Thales Dec 2013
Waitrose 2014
John Lewis 2014
Matalan
Atos 2014
Barclays
mott macdonald graduate scheme
HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC)
BAE Systems Applied Intelligence
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