There is a difference between being over qualified and over educated, as the majority of graduates (including myself) have not studied an academic subject but a subject of interest to an 18-ish year old. Labour put so much emphasis on how everyone should be going to university with their 50% target, but now there are too many graduates competing for jobs that don’t really require a degree at all. The only true professions that necessitate a degree are; Medicine including the supporting roles such as nurses, Law and Teaching. All other professions could in reality be learnt on the job as it was done before the boom in university education. I am by no means against higher education, just the sudden pressure that we all must be graduates. The majority of people that I know who are graduates went to university for the experience, and had absolutely no idea what they wanted to do once they graduated. Some of the most successful people left school at 16 and have made their millions through sheer hard work and ambition such as Alan Sugar and Richard Branson. In my career within media and finance I have come across managerial people who started work at a company at 18 as an admin assistant and have made their way up to Managing Partner at the age of 24. That is impressive.
If one really wants to go to university, whether it is for a particular occupation or purely for the experience, then everyone should have the opportunity. However, I believe that those who are undecided or want to make money, should be encouraged to work their way up in a company and not feel that it is a choice between education and success or a job at 16 and dead-end jobs. You can have success without going to university if that is what you want to do as many have proven. My advise; follow your heart and not what your Careers Advisor tells you to do.