Higher education provides better opportunities in the labour market
The data compiled by the Central Statistical Bureau (CSB) show that at the end of 2019, 82.8 %* of the graduates of Latvian higher education institutions and colleges in 2017 (two years after graduation) were employed, 3.7 % of graduates had registered unemployed status, but 6.5 % – were economically inactive. In turn, among 2018 graduates even more persons were employed a year after graduation - 85.9 % of graduates.
“Data-based analysis is the basis for decision-making, therefore for the second year in a row the CSB has prepared data on activity of the university graduates. Significant work has been done by combining information from various registers, including the State Revenue Service and the State Employment Agency, which was forwarded for analysis to the Ministry of Education and Science,” points out Baiba Zukula, Director of the CSB Social Statistics Department.
The employment rate was higher for females than for males
Two years after graduation, 82.8 % of year 2017 graduates were employed - 83.3 % female graduates and 82.1 % male graduates. However, males were more likely than females to continue their studies - 18.0 % of males and 15.5 % of females continued their studies after higher education.
Most graduates become managers, professionals or technicians and associate professionals
The majority (79.9 % of 2017 graduates and 78.2 % of 2018 graduates) are employed in three major groups of higher level professions - managers (major group 1), professionals (major group 2) and technicians and associate professionals (major group 3). When comparing the employment status of 2017 graduates a year and two years after graduation, it is obvious that the share of managers and professionals in the number of employees has increased.
The higher the level of education, the higher the income
In 2019, compared to 2018, gross income has grown significantly for graduates of all levels. The average income before taxes for 2019 college graduates in 2019 was EUR 15 thousand (by 2 thousand more than in 2018), for bachelor graduates - EUR 16 thousand (by 3 thousand more than in 2018). The income of master's and doctoral graduates is significantly higher - EUR 23 thousand and EUR 31 thousand, respectively (EUR 19 thousand and EUR 30 thousand in 2018).
In order to evaluate the further progress of graduates of higher education institutions after graduation, the CSB already at the beginning of last year prepared for the first time an analysis of data on 2017 graduates of higher education institutions on their activity and employment one year after graduation. At the end of 2020, data on 2017 graduates have been prepared for the second time - two years after graduation - and for the first time on 2018 graduates. Data on the activity of Latvian higher education institution graduates at the end of 2019, as well as income in 2019 have also been prepared.
The analysis has been made using the information available in administrative data sources, in accordance with the Cabinet Regulation No 276 of 25 June 2019 „Regulations on the State Education Information System”. The prepared data are forwarded for analysis to the Ministry of Education and Science. The results of monitoring higher education institution graduates in Latvia were published for the first time in 2020. In the future, the graduates of each year will be monitored for a period of 10 years, which will allow to improve the higher education process, as well as provide additional information to prospective students about the chosen study fields and further perspectives in the labour market. Data on the activity and employment of 2017 and 2018 higher education institution graduates at the end of 2019 and income in 2019 can be found in the Open data portal.
* The calculation does not include persons whose personal identification code is known, and therefore it is not possible to add information from the registers.