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Gap-year Graduates To Be Funded By Taxpayers

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http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/poli...icle6735705.ece

Taxpayers are to fund gap years for graduates to keep them off the dole queue, The Times has learnt.

Hundreds of university leavers will get public money from Lord Mandelson’s department to help them to travel to places such as Costa Rica, Borneo and India.

The class of 2009 — the first to pay top-up fees — faces becoming the “lost generation†in a graduate job market that has shrunk by 20 per cent in the past year.

The number of graduates who are unemployed six months after leaving university has reached its highest level since records began, with one in ten not in jobs or further study. Careers experts say that 80,000 will hunt in vain for work this summer.

A surge in the number of applicants for university — up 10 per cent on last year — means that the situation for this year’s graduates is expected to worsen. Rising numbers will be graduating every summer, adding to the competition for jobs. Critics said that the Government was “bribing†graduates to go on gap years in order to massage unemployment figures.

The first university leavers to take part in the scheme will spend the months up to Christmas living in remote communities and going on expeditions in projects that usually cost £3,000 per person.

The advertisement for participants asks: “Have you recently graduated and feel like everything is all doom and gloom?†Joining an overseas expedition “could be just the thing you need to inject some excitement and optimism into your lifeâ€. The expedition would “boost your employability skills and help set you apart from the crowdâ€.

The graduates, who must be under 24, will help to build schools and to improve sanitation. They will spend time learning skills that the Government and Raleigh, the gap year company running the programme, say will help them to find jobs when they return to Britain.

The TaxPayers’ Alliance reacted with anger to the initiative. Matthew Sinclair, its research director, said: “The Government’s attempts to keep people off the unemployment numbers at any cost are growing more and more transparent.

Not quite sure over the journalism in this, aren't we talking about gap years next in the second sentence we are talking about leavers? If they are leavers how can they be having a gap year?

Anyway I'm sure this will be very nice for the middle and upper class students who are taking this gap year.

Blatant manipulation may mean that my prediction of 3m unemployed by the end of the year may be missed. A figure of 2.8m may be the highest this year.

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So they spend £20K on becoming a graduate, then we send them overseas to learn how to be brickies and plumbers.

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Am I the only one who thinks "gap years" for school-leavers / new graduates are a stupid idea?

When I left school in 1992, they were already all the rage... but to me the idea of a year of idleness gaining some nebulous "life experience" while adding another year to my CV of parental dependence seemed an utterly pointless self-indulgence. A better goal seemed to me to become the youngest medical graduate in town.

Now I'm a 35 year old GP, I'm about to take a proper "gap year" - funded out of my own savings, and with a clear purpose: A masters degree in an arts subject that is a passionate obsession of mine.

However, like so many NuLab policies, this is inconsequential headline-grabbing whimsy. The BBC report on the scheme makes it clear that it will assist a maximum of 500 youngsters a year. How many pupils complete their A levels each year? I couldn't find an answer on google, but I did learn that 5.5million A level papers are sat each year. Move on, nothing to see here.

Edit for typo.

Edited by Selling up

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http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/poli...icle6735705.ece

Not quite sure over the journalism in this, aren't we talking about gap years next in the second sentence we are talking about leavers? If they are leavers how can they be having a gap year?

Anyway I'm sure this will be very nice for the middle and upper class students who are taking this gap year.

Blatant manipulation may mean that my prediction of 3m unemployed by the end of the year may be missed. A figure of 2.8m may be the highest this year.

why are the taxpayers having to pay for this , i have worked 24 years and have saved a bit i am now unemployed and i can't claim nothing as my wife is still working and i have to much saved yet these tossers have contibuted nothing and they get a pay out this goverment should be kicked out now , if this govt is allowed to stay in this country is finished

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Guest skullingtonjoe

Sorry, double post :rolleyes:

Edited by skullingtonjoe

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Guest skullingtonjoe
Hope they can adjust to working for a few dollars a day then! :lol: (Even though the cost of living will be less, the poor little luvvies will still be stressing aobut how they can repay their student loans!)

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Why not just give the 500 winning students £3000 each towards paying off their loans?

Or give 1000 students £1500, or 3000 students £500?

In my view there should be a return to student grants but only in real subjects like science, technology and medicine.

Edited by blankster

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Am I the only one who thinks "gap years" for school-leavers / new graduates are a stupid idea?

When I left school in 1992, they were already all the rage... but to me the idea of a year of idleness gaining some nebulous "life experience" while adding another year to my CV of parental dependence seemed an utterly pointless self-indulgence. A better goal seemed to me to become the youngest medical graduate in town.

Now I'm a 35 year old GP, I'm about to take a proper "gap year" - funded out of my own savings, and with a clear purpose: A masters degree in an arts subject that is a passionate obsession of mine.

However, like so many NuLab policies, this is inconsequential headline-grabbing whimsy. The BBC report on the scheme makes it clear that it will assist a maximum of 500 youngsters a year. How many pupils complete their A levels each year? I couldn't find an answer on google, but I did learn that 5.5million A level papers are sat each year. Move on, nothing to see here.

Edit for typo.

I wish I had taken a year off.

My thinking was a bit like yours - leave home after A-levels, work whilst getting degree, get professional qualifications so I can stick pointless letters after my name in email footers, build a career etc. Can't help thinking I missed out on something tho. Two of my younger cousins spent a year travelling post-uni before starting their jobs and unless they're very good liers they enjoyed it a lot. All I really gained was a few £k a year earlier on - I don't think postponing starting full time for a year would have hurt my career at all.

Now in my late 20s it would seem a little odd to dump it all for a year and do something totally different abroad despite the fact I could afford it and probably live more comfortably that if I'd done it at 21. An opportunity missed for no good reason.

Edited by impatient_mug

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Now in my late 20s it would seem a little odd to dump it all for a year and do something totally different abroad despite the fact I could afford it and probably live more comfortably that if I'd done it at 21. An opportunity missed for no good reason.

That's where I disagree with you. I'm 35 and I'm about to do it. (Edit: Not abroad mind you but it involves moving from Lancashire to London for a year so it's a pretty big change)

If you think you missed out on a worthwhile experience, go and do it now.

Edit: To put it another way: You call it "an opportunity missed". But why do think that opportunity is not still open to you? Okay, maybe mid-recession is not the time to put your job in jeopardy. But the recession will end. You can do it then.

Edited by Selling up

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Thing is, how many graduates are actually jobless?

Most people I know worked throughout uni, and even if they couldn't get a 'real' job when graduating, would still have their part time job in Tesco or something.

Anyone who literally has no job at all must have well to do parents funding them.

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I wish I had taken a year off.

My thinking was a bit like yours - leave home after A-levels, work whilst getting degree, get professional qualifications so I can stick pointless letters after my name in email footers, build a career etc. Can't help thinking I missed out on something tho. Two of my younger cousins spent a year travelling post-uni before starting their jobs and unless they're very good liers they enjoyed it a lot. All I really gained was a few �k a year earlier on - I don't think postponing starting full time for a year would have hurt my career at all.

Now in my late 20s it would seem a little odd to dump it all for a year and do something totally different abroad despite the fact I could afford it and probably live more comfortably that if I'd done it at 21. An opportunity missed for no good reason.

You missed out not taking the year out earlier. I took a year out, self funded entirely (working on the way round, and working my fingers to the bone before hand), and I honestly believe it had a big impact on the person I am today (whether that is good or bad is subjective :P).

That said, late 20s is hardly too late (unless you have kids etc.). Just get off and do it. You'll find there are absolutely loads doing the same thing all round the world.

The issue at hand though is should it be funded by the taxpayer... My 2p worth is a definitive NO... half of the benefit for me was finding the cash to fund it all myself, and learning about the value of money, budgeting etc.

Edited by the.ciscokid

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Surely they could find plenty of projects to be getting on with here in the UK..they don't need to go half way round the world for this. And if it's about helping remote communities, surely those people only need the materials and possibly some training to do it for themselves.

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Why not just give the 500 winning students £3000 each towards paying off their loans?

Or give 1000 students £1500, or 3000 students £500?

In my view there should be a return to student grants but only in real subjects like science, technology and medicine.

In priciple I agree however we can't afford it.

I propose free Uni places limited to 1.4 times the number of predicted jobs availible in the related sectors job sectors to the degree subject. Charge for the ones that don't and don't allow any loans for these subjects. People might actually do maths and science instead of media and art.

Don't get me wrong media and art a important but they need to be proportional.

PS If you send the young out the country they:

-Might not come back at all wanting dole

-Won't vote, protest or revolt

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I'm considering taking advantage of this now that a lot of my freelance work has dried up. (Yes, university is such a joke these days that you can do a lot of work on the side and still get a good degree).

I'll see how my latest job application goes, if no luck, I'll have a look at this thing.

It's not free, just subsidised... still gotta put up £1000 and pay for your flights.

I realise that stealing from the taxpayer isn't brilliant, but stuff it... if the rich gits can have all their mortgage interest paid for by the taxpayer and the chavs can get a luxury pad in london for overbreeding then I might as well get something out of the state before I'm consigned to a lifetime of lower-middle class slavery.

Anyway, this isn't even worth a story.. they're only offering 500 places, with a £2k subsidy on each. So, government is paying a mere £1 mil to make it look like they're doing something. Chicken feed.

Perhaps they just want to increase the amount of young people out of the country and unable/ unlikely to vote during the next election?

Edited by DementedTuna

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Why on earth do we think any other poorer country needs a bunch of unskilled young manual workers? They've got millions of unemployed young men already.

Alteratively, why not put the 500 through a rigorous, intensive period of basic chippie/engineer/plumber etc training here, so they at least know one end of a hammer from the other, then select only the very best motivated and skilled?. That will weed out the 'travelling; going-to-find-myself' wasters from those capable of actually contributing something overseas.

Africa or India don't need an Emo with a 2:1 in Art History, and a liking for Lily Allen - they need someone who can lay (and teach) basic drainlaying or construction from the moment he arrives. And - perish the thought - that might just be someone whose been made redundant from the building industry.

Edited by juvenal

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its a gap year between completing your goldfish bowl management degree ( with honours) and your first year on the dole.

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Guest skullingtonjoe
its a gap year between completing your goldfish bowl management degree ( with honours) and your first year on the dole.

At least seeing all that poverty around them will prepare them for a life of dole / McJobs when they return. They don`t know what`s coming... :unsure::lol:

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Firstly this is just a PR stunt and 500 places is nothing considering the numbers looking for jobs. Secondly why are graduates so important? What about people who have just lots their jobs, don't they deserve a gap year on some tropical retreat.

I find this government pretty disgusting. They show contempt to working people. They idea that the tax payer should pay to send these people overseas to go on a charity holiday is simply wrong.

I could accept it if this was open to everyone but to limit it to graduates is simply wrong and shows how out of touch they are with the situation facing 3 million people. Those people in their late 30s and 40s that have lost their jobs will almost certainly face at least 10 years of job uncertainty. I'm not saying they will be unemployed for 10 years but more the fact that they will probably have to choose a new lesser paid and less secure job.

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Guest skullingtonjoe
Firstly this is just a PR stunt and 500 places is nothing considering the numbers looking for jobs. Secondly why are graduates so important? What about people who have just lots their jobs, don't they deserve a gap year on some tropical retreat.

I find this government pretty disgusting. They show contempt to working people. They idea that the tax payer should pay to send these people overseas to go on a charity holiday is simply wrong.

I could accept it if this was open to everyone but to limit it to graduates is simply wrong and shows how out of touch they are with the situation facing 3 million people. Those people in their late 30s and 40s that have lost their jobs will almost certainly face at least 10 years of job uncertainty. I'm not saying they will be unemployed for 10 years but more the fact that they will probably have to choose a new lesser paid and less secure job.

"Yeah, but it`s graduates innit? They`re the best of the crop innit? Really brainy those graduates innit? I mean, look at the guy who just served my Big Whopper Meal... "

PR stunts are something that the government seems to excel at. They`re only helping graduates because of their perceived `high value` (which is ironic when you consider they`re a dime-a-dozen!) :lol:

Edited by skullingtonjoe

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"Yeah, but it`s graduates innit? They`re the best of the crop innit? Really brainy those graduates innit? I mean, look at the guy who just served my Big Whopper Meal...

Yep, bash the students once again why don't you.. it's not enough that they've got bugger all prospects and a mountain of debt, they also deserve to have some smug older git proclaiming how retarded they all are...

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Yep, bash the students once again why don't you.. it's not enough that they've got bugger all prospects and a mountain of debt, they also deserve to have some smug older git proclaiming how retarded they all are...

retarded? I think you mean "special".

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It's the semi-final flounderings of a dying and bankrupt (ideologically and financially) government.

Brace yourself for more shite in the months to come.

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Guest skullingtonjoe
Yep, bash the students once again why don't you.. it's not enough that they've got bugger all prospects and a mountain of debt, they also deserve to have some smug older git proclaiming how retarded they all are...

Sorry if I came across smug.

Older? a bit. Wiser? Definitely.

Reason: I graduated back in 1992 with Bsc (how the hell is that a science?) in Politics with International Studies. Waste of three years of my life. With hindsight I wish I`d taken the maths/science route instead, but I fu<ked up my `O` levels and that`s the path my life took (said without a shred of self-pity btw, honestly!)

Bugger all prospects - pretty much the case I`d say. Shoving everyone into an `education grinder` without jobs to support the debts seems like utter madness. The whole `education, education, education` doctrine sounds like something from a 1950s Soviet propaganda film - what use is it knowing loads of stuff from a manual if you cannot apply the knowledge. If the jobs are not there, all that will happen is that there will be a mountain of `book-learners` with no experience.

I never meant to give the impression that most students are retarded - you come across as being pretty clued-up - but I`ve seen some howlers: the bank officer who couldn`t divide 100/4 without a calculator; mis-spellings aplenty and generally crap levels of literacy / numeracy. Without a doubt there are a lot of people in higher education studying the kind of subjects that I would not be able to get my head around.

As a `smug older git` I would suggest that you don`t worry about the mountain of debt and bugger all prospects. Easy to say, but there`s no point in fretting over it - it won`t end in calamity, trust me. ;) Debt is nothing to be intimidated by - if you haven`t got the money, then you haven`t got it and your creditors will have to make do with a reasonable offer from you (I know this from personal experience). Not too sure about the prospects - I guess this is where the government would start going on about graduates needing to be `entrepreneurial`. :rolleyes:

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