60% of the UK’s Industry Leaders Have a Humanities Degree

2012-02-24 01:38 PMStatistics

According to the New College of the Humanities (NCH), a whopping proportion (60%) of the people at the top of their profession in the UK studied a humanities, social science or arts degree. The degrees of over 800 professionals were investigated as part of the study, including MPs and CEOs of FTSE 100 companies. Only 15% of the industry leaders who took part in the study had studied science, technology, engineering or mathematics subjects at university…

Badge of honour...

It would appear that many of the most powerful people in Britain have a humanities background. Indeed, 65% of the current MPs that participated in the NCH’s survey studied an arts, humanities or social sciences subject at university.

 

So why do humanities graduates have the edge over science graduates?

 

Professor AC Grayling, Master of New College of the Humanities, said: “A humanities education is deeply enriching for individuals. But it offers great practical benefit too. Much of the talent that goes into law, journalism, the civil service, politics, financial services, the creative industries, publishing, education, and much besides, is drawn from people who have studied the humanities.”

 

Admittedly, not every industry was proven to be completely dominated by humanities grads. For example, 34% of CEOs at FTSE 100 companies had studied arts, humanities and social sciences subjects, while 31% came from STEM backgrounds. What’s more, 65% of the Vice Chancellors of Russell Group universities that participated in the survey had studied a science, technology, engineering or mathematics subject.

 

However, the notion that 60% of the UK’s industry leaders came from a humanities background adds further to fuel to the fire that subjects like computer science and engineering have the worst employability rates.

Image courtesy of Quinn Dombrowski, 'Humanities'



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