17 Jul 2015

Are student workers a threat or a solution?

Brian Fabo / Miroslav Beblavy

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The massification of tertiary education means that a significant percentage of young people participate in tertiary education while also working. They can be seen as a threat – as cheap and highly qualified competition for low-skilled workers in casual jobs who are setting aside their studies for the time being in favour of immediate income. Or they might present an opportunity – a natural way for a large percentage of young people to gain experience and contact with the labour market without the need for massive government programmes.

The authors argue in this CEPS commentary that student work is more of an opportunity than a threat.

Brian Fabo is a Researcher at CEPS and Miroslav Beblavý is Associate Senior Research Fellow at CEPS. This Commentary synthesises the main findings of a report prepared for STYLE, a research project that aims to examine the obstacles and opportunities affecting youth employment in Europe (www.style-research.eu/). A longer version of this Commentary has also been published as a Working Document on the CEPS website, entitled “Students in Work and their Impact on the Labour Market”, July 2015 (www.ceps.eu/publications/students-work-and-their-impact-labour-market).