Glasgow ranks first in Scotland for students wanting to stay after graduation

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Isabel Thomas
News Editor

New analysis by the Centre for Cities has found that 46 per cent of Glasgow students choose to stay on in the city after graduation. This ranks Glasgow the first city in Scotland and fifth in the UK overall for students continuing in after they have finished university.

In comparison, Edinburgh had a retention rate of 42 per cent, Aberdeen at 43 per cent, while Dundee retained just 26 per cent of students. The report recognises that while around a third of Glasgow graduates are home students, there are still a significant number of non-local graduates choosing to work in Glasgow after graduation. Those graduating in creative arts, computer science, and law were the most likely to settle in Glasgow. Out of the Glasgow universities, Glasgow School of Art had the highest retention rates for their students.

Speaking about these figures that were compiled as part of HESA’s latest Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education survey. A spokesman for Glasgow City Council said: “The findings of this report are pleasing and show Glasgow’s success in retaining our graduates and developing a highly skilled workforce that attracts global companies to locate in the city.

“However, to attract and retain both graduates and major employers, a city needs more than just world-class universities and workforces. It must also have assets such as an attractive lifestyle, competitive living and business costs, and a strong business support network – and this is where Glasgow comes into its own.”

Andrew Carter, Chief Executive of Centre for Cities the think-tank leading the study, stated: “Glasgow has one of the highest student retention rates in the UK, with almost half of people who study in the city staying for work after graduation.

“While this demonstrates the strength of the city’s economy, more can be done to also attract recent graduates from elsewhere. To do this, the policy makers in Glasgow should prioritise the further expansion of high-skilled job opportunities in the city.”