FH Magazine

Qualified and practically-oriented

In the end what really counts is the bottom line. And as far as chances on the labour market are concerned, for graduates of an Austrian University of Applied Sciences, the bottom line is 98. Ninety-eight percent of them are not affected by joblessness at the end of their studies, and the reasons for this nearly full employment are as pleasant as they are varied. “Basically, a connection to practice is always highly valued in business, and graduates of a UAS think and act practically,” explains Manuela Lindlbauer, CEO of Lindlpower Personalberatung, a recruitment agency. “It is a well-known fact that they are prepared for professional life because of their work placements.”
This is particularly true for some graduates, as a third of UAS trainees need not even look for a job after completing their studies: Many they have already received job offers during their internships, which ensures them a safe career option for the rest of their studies. For the remaining students, the Universities of Applied Sciences organise additional possibilities to find the right employer for students’ personal career goals. During career fairs and job exchanges, particularly interesting employers are invited to present their job offerings on campus. And in order for students to be able to present their qualifications and abilities confidently and competently, training courses are constantly held on essential topics such as rhetoric, body language and other presentation techniques, which are used to demonstrate important soft skills on the labour market.

Expertise
On the other hand, graduates of UASs also benefit from the excellent reputation concerning their expertise, especially due to the specialisations in their studies. Markus Brenner from Brenner & Company International Management Consulting confirms this: “The education at UASs is very specialised for those who know exactly what their goals are and want to develop their careers in this particular field,” says the management consultant. In many areas – for example, in real estate – there are numerous specialisations where expertise can only be acquired at UASs, and this is of course extremely highly valued in the respective sectors. Mostly because they know that the necessary know-how is passed on to students by professionals who work in that field. Students also benefit from this later on when looking for a job, as Lindlbauer knows: “It is certainly a service for graduates of a UAS that their heads of programme have good contacts in business and know not only the students in their programmes but also potential employers,” says the recruitment consultant. Graduates with a degree from a UAS no longer need to be concerned about the equality of degrees as these are now fully equivalent to degrees acquired at traditional universities. “We tell the employers we work for in briefings that the position requires a candidate with an academic degree – and graduates from both types of institution have one,” reports Brenner from his actual work. This is why potential differences in salary are also no longer an issue.

Support in Founding a Business
Those who would like to determine their own salary can rely on initial help from their alma mater when they have successfully completed their studies. At start-up centres, those starting up their own business can find offers ranging from individual coaches to boot camps. They get support and advice in matters of contracts and licenses. Or they have the possibility to move into the co-working spaces on campus when setting up their first office or to continue using labs or production facilities. They then, in turn, become one of those businesses that know what graduates of UASs have to offer

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