Staff members at the University of Helsinki staged a walkout to express their disapproval of the cuts in education spending on 20 April, 2016.The Confederation of Unions for Professional and Managerial Staff in Finland (Akava) has reminded young people that education truly pays off amid its concerns that the ongoing debate over unemployment has blurred public perceptions of reality.

“Fewer than 7 per cent of people with a post-graduate degree are unemployed, whereas 12.5 per cent of the entire labour force are unemployed. Educated people are considerably more unlikely to experience even a short period of unemployment than they are to be employed for the whole duration of their career,” Ida Mielityinen, an expert at Akava, points out in a press release.

Akava presents a number of statistics in support of its claim.

“The monthly earnings of people with a higher education degree [including undergraduate degrees] are 1,100 euros higher than those of the average wage earner,” it states, quoting data on the structure of earnings released by Statistics Finland in 2014.

The data indicate that the average monthly earnings of wage earners were 3,350 euros in 2014, whereas those of people with a higher education degree were 4,110 euros and those of people without a higher education degree 2,970 euros. The median monthly earnings of full-time employees, meanwhile, were 2,946 euros.

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The figures quoted represent the earnings of full-time employees and include performance-based bonuses.

Akava also reminds that the earnings of people with a higher education degree tend to increase as they advance in their careers.

“The earnings typically creep up as people accumulate work experience. The net earnings of people who have acquired a higher education degree are an average of 500,000 euros higher than those of people who have acquired a secondary education degree after taxes and income transfers,” it says, quoting a study carried out in 2014.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Vesa Moilanen – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi