Release type: Media Release


Regional universities top the list for graduate employment


Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie
Minister for Regionalisation, Regional Communications and Regional Education
Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience

Australia’s regional universities outrank their capital city counterparts for full-time graduate employment four months after graduation, according to a new report released today.

Minister for Regionalisation, Regional Communications and Regional Education Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie said the 2021 Graduate Outcomes Survey shows regional universities are performing well and clearly meeting the needs of employers and students.

According to the 2021 Graduate Outcomes Survey, the employment rate for graduates from regional universities is far outpacing the Australian average at 78.6 per cent, compared with an average of 68.9 per cent across all institutions.

Charles Sturt University topped the list with an employment rate of 84.6 per cent four months after graduation. Central Queensland University came in next at 83.4 per cent, University of New England at 80.9 per cent, University of Southern Queensland at 79.2 per cent, and James Cook University at 78 per cent.

“Many graduates from regional universities have completed degrees that prepare them for career paths and equip them with the skills that are in high demand by employers,” Minister McKenzie said.

“These results also demonstrate that our regional universities have become centres of excellence in specialised fields and as a result are attracting the highest calibre of students.”

The 2021 Graduate Outcomes Survey was conducted across three survey rounds and the graduate full-time employment rate improved substantially from 60.6 per cent in November 2020 to 67.9 per cent in February 2021 to 72.1 per cent in May 2021.

Graduates with strong vocational outcomes include Pharmacy, 95.0 per cent, Engineering, 80.3 per cent and Teacher Education, 79.1 per cent.

The full 2021 Graduate Outcomes Survey can be found at