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Graduate job opportunities 'should include diverse backgrounds'

Published: Thursday, 22 October 2009   Category: Diversity Jobs

Young people with disadvantaged backgrounds should be given equal opportunity to attend university and take up graduate jobs, it has been said.

Dr Lee Elliot Major, director of research at the Sutton Trust, was commenting on recent research by the University and Colleges Union, which showed that those from the south-east have greater chances of taking up higher education.

The expert claimed that the UK is worse than most other developed countries in terms of the gap between privileged and non-privileged people's abilities to gain the qualifications needed for a graduate job.

"Background, rather than individual talent, is the dominant factor determining success in life," he explained.

"Until we encourage and enable more bright, able students from non-privileged backgrounds into our most prestigious universities, our professional elites will remain unrepresentative of society at large."

The guardian recently reported that women and ethnic minorities will be able to take advantage of a Department for Communities and Local Government fire and rescue management employment programme next year.

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