Almost a fifth (17%) of women aged 18-24 years old feel they have chosen their career path too young, according to new research by Oxford Open Learning Trust.
The YouGov survey of 2,000 adults, commissioned by Oxford Open Learning Trust alongside launching the career change advice tool the Profession Picker, looked into the careers advice Brits received at school and how they felt about the paths they chose to their careers.
Over a third of young women aged 18-34 (35%) said that the education and training they’ve received so far has not prepared them for their current career.
Upon leaving secondary school, 18% of women aged under 35 years old said they left without any careers advice and 71% of these females surveyed admitted that their current career is not what they thought they’d end up doing when they left school.
This could be the reason for so many millennials pursuing career changes in their mid-twenties. A previous survey by Oxford Open Learning Trust found that almost half (44%) of 25-34 year olds had already changed careers.
The poll also revealed that almost two-thirds of female workers in Britain (65%) said that they would consider training or retraining for a new career.
Despite many young women having doubts about their career paths, efforts over the last decade to encourage female students to study STEM subjects seem to have paid off. In this years’ survey, just 3% of young women aged 18-24 claimed they felt pushed towards gender-stereotypical subjects at school.
A recent study conducted by Microsoft found that girls in the UK become interested in STEM subjects just before the age of 11 and that secondary school years were important in deciding if she will work in a STEM focused industry.
Dr Nick Smith, courses director and founder of Oxford Open Learning Trust, said:
“Schools have come a long way in the last decade in recognising equality between male and female students when it comes to picking the most appropriate subjects for their career. Although what is clear from the study is that many young women feel they are making decisions about their career path too young and this is resulting in many changing their minds during their mid-twenties.
“For those who feel that they have been trapped into a certain career path due to making important choices too young, it is never too late to train again. We created the Profession Picker tool to help those thinking of a career change. Each year, we serve learners that might need an extra qualification such as GCSE or A Level in order to get their desired job and start a new career.”