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Survey highlights undergrads career aspirations

TARGETjobs asked first years which career sectors most interested them and the results for men were astonishingly different from women.

90% of first years who said they were most attracted to retail careers were women, while 70% who were most attracted to IT careers were men. 

Women’s top 10 careers                                                                                    

1. Retail

2. Media

3. Public Sector

4. Marketing

5. Law

6. Science

7. Management Consulting

8. Accountancy

9. Property

10. Banking and Insurance

The TARGETjobs Attitudes to Work Survey also showed that men were twice as likely to be motivated by a big salary than women.

It was a balanced sample of 1,500 first years with approximately a third of respondents studying arts and social science degrees, a third science and engineering and the rest management, business and law. Clearly some degree subjects, specifically engineering and IT, contain more male students and therefore you would expect these to be popular with men, but how do we account for the fact that careers that are & lsquo;gender-free’ like retail, the public sector and investment banking attract men and women in very different ways?

Chris Phillips, research director at GTI Media/TARGETjobs said, “This is the first time that we have focused specifically on the career aims of first year undergraduates and the results should interest the growing number of graduate recruiters targeting students at the start of their studies. Clearly, some career sectors need to assess how they tailor their marketing to attract more men – or more women.”

A slide deck of the findings is here:


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