'Give me a chance to prove myself'

Dunedin aeronautical engineering graduate Muhammad Saib says he has lost count of the number of jobs he has applied for since completing his training last year. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
Dunedin aeronautical engineering graduate Muhammad Saib says he has lost count of the number of jobs he has applied for since completing his training last year. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
Dunedin man Muhammad Saib (22) has lost count of the number of jobs he has applied for since completing his aeronautical engineering training last year.

Mr Saib contacted the Otago Daily Times after reading an article published last month which revealed that 9% of people on the unemployment benefit have either a degree or a professional qualification.

He could not put a number on how many jobs he had applied for, but said he had contacted at least 90 companies around New Zealand "from Auckland to Invercargill" and a few overseas.

After spending a year training with Air New Zealand in Christchurch and two years at Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology(NMIT), he thought his job prospects would be pretty good.

"Back when I first started at NMIT, it was actually pretty bad then, but they said by the time we finished it would be much better and there would be heaps of jobs."

This proved not to be the case and since graduating, in between continuously applying for jobs, he had been working at The Warehouse to get by.

"It's pretty disappointing; just sad really."

He said it was getting to the point where he was willing to take any job that was "to do with engineering".

If he was unable to find his favoured work soon, he would consider becoming a personal trainer - while keeping the door open to becoming an aeronautical engineer.

Asked what he would like to say to potential employers, he said: "Give me a chance to prove myself".

By this he meant he would be willing to work for free to show what he could do and to improve his skill base.

"I haven't given up yet ... [but] I can't wait forever, because I have got a big student loan."

- vaughan.elder@odt.co.nz

Nothing has changed

New Zealand had given up on engineering decades ago, certainly by the end of the '80s.  To expect there to be 'heaps of jobs' in the engineering field in NZ, let alone something as specialised as aeronautical engineering, is simply naive. He would be better applying overseas. Otherwise he'll be waiting a very long time.

Educated may be the worst off

So many of them are moving to Australia. It used to be you moved to Australia for baubles - now it's just to earn a living. The educated are perhaps the worst off in NZ.

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