Graduates of the EIT Digital Master School are wanted on the job market. That might be concluded from the Alumni survey EIT Digital recently conducted. It shows that the majority of the graduated master school students is employed, either as employee within a company or organisation or as a founder of one's own startup. Also, most of the students have been offered job offers prior to their graduation. The results are in line with the expectations, Chief Education Officer Roberto Prieto says. "We have as good as full employability, which is very high".
The survey was held late 2020 under all alumni of the EIT Digital Education programmes, including the EIT Digital Master School, Doctoral School, and Summer School. In total 751 people responded, of whom the majority, 679, graduated from the EIT Digital Master School. The majority of the graduated EIT Digital Master School students would recommend the school to friends or colleagues with an average rating of almost 5 on a 5-point Licker scale. "The EIT Digital Master School has drastically changed my life, has boosted my career and career opportunities in many ways, and has definitely been one of my most active years of my life. The fact of being able to study in 2 countries with a Master school in the middle, fringing tons of really good friends are all reasons why EIT Digital Master School has been the perfect choice for me" says one of the respondents.
Finding a good career is one of the reasons to rate the EIT Digital Master School high. This career is either at a company (73%) or in their own firm (15%), totalling to almost full employment (88%). The remaining 2% is currently on leave, caring for children, travelling, taking time off, planning to start a business or work on a personal project or are furthering their education. A small fraction 9% is looking for a job.
Of all the employed people, almost one third (27%) were already recruited before even graduating. Over ninety per cent of the employed graduates started working within 6 months after graduation; 35% of them already within the first three months.
Head of the EIT Digital Master School Andrea Paoli says going to a university is more than just learning theories. "The EIT Digital Master School offers students additional perks to improve their career prospects. These are among others learning to adapt to different cultures by studying at two European top tech universities, working within international teams and building networks. And our students are valuable on the job market, for they have mastered the skill to give business meaning to emerging technologies."
The EIT Digital Master School is a European network of 18 top technical universities that, since 2012, combines technical education on emerging technologies with entrepreneurial education. Students learn to turn deep tech into business in a two-year programme at two universities. Upon successful completion, they receive two Masters' degrees, plus a certificate from the European Institute of Innovation and Technology (EIT). There are eight programmes to choose from. These are:
The setup of the EIT Digital Master School offers, according to one of the respondents, "many possibilities to grow the entrepreneurial potential of students." Over a hundred students (15%) are currently starting a startup (6%) or have already founded one (8,5%). Of the ones who have founded a startup, 35 have received external funding. Of these the majority (77%) have received funding between 1-100.000 euro, 14% received funding between 500.000 and 100.000 euro and 6% even more. The Innovation and entrepreneurship part of the education seems to reveal latent entrepreneurial talents to make a business out of technology. "It allowed me to transform myself into an entrepreneur and gave me real opportunities to create start-ups," says one of the respondents.
234 EIT Digital Master School survey respondents also answered a question about their salary, that gives some insights in which range of salaries the EIT Digital Master School student might expect after graduating. Regardless of the year of graduation, almost seventy per cent (68,1) of the students make an annual salary above 40.000 euro a year. To compare, the average salary in Europe is calculated at about 28.000 a year. About 14% makes more than 71.000 euro a year.
By studying at the EIT Digital Master School, students are part of a unique ecosystem of entrepreneurs, companies, researchers and alumni across the whole of Europe. This network is one of the most valued assets among the EIT Digital Master School students who name the network opportunities as "great", a "solid way to build a network", and "amazing". They praise the opportunity to meet "lots of like-minded people from different countries" and describe the network and community as "strong". "Living and working in foreign countries means networking", says one of the respondents.
The network the students built entail the students they meet in their cohort, students from other programmes during the Kick-Off event and the Summer School and at the local events the co-location centres of EIT Digital organise and where they can meet local EIT Digital partners, and of course the people they meet in the ecosystems of the two universities at which they study. This latter is also a perk that the students explicitly mention. They "love the opportunity to study at two reputed universities", and they mention the option of "learning different teaching methods".
As may be expected, most of the students (45%) start their two-year masters immediately after graduating from their bachelors. The average age of starting students is therefore 24. The data shows also an increasing number of people starting later in their career with a master: 15% starts one year after their bachelors, and 26 per cent starts later, by between two or even more than eleven years. Age groups therefore vary. Among the respondents, most of them studied when they were between 23 and 30 years old. A huge group of respondents, about 16%, started their masters in their thirties, after having worked for some time. To date, the oldest person who graduated in 2020 is 56 years old. "This illustrates the relevance of needed skills we are providing", concludes Prieto, "After all, European companies have a need for people who can translate emerging technologies into business value. We prepare our students on these needed skills to boost their careers and build a strong digital Europe. Together."
Tallinn University of Technology (TalTech)