GRADUATE jobs may be a thing of the past because of the huge expansion of higher education and multi-skilling requirements of industry, according to a senior industry training manager.
"We still retain the measles approach to learning," John Berkeley told this week's Further Education Development Agency conference in London. "Have it young and you should not have it for the rest of your life. We must see it as a continuous spectrum."
Further education and higher education represented the stratification of education and qualifications which had stifled individual achievement and lifelong learning instead of encouraging it, said the Rover Group education and careers manager.
Mr Berkeley told the conference that many employers had already abandoned inflexible work patterns and were now encouraging individuals to maximise their contribution to the company without being constrained by their role or academic status.
Further education belongs to a "bygone age", he explained. "The notion of a graduate job is surely gone forever, having been eroded by the expansion of higher education. Flexible work patterns are challenging the very concept of a job."
Mr Berkeley said that there were too many different qualifications available, leading to public and employer confusion. He recommended the abolition of the distinctions between academic, vocational and work-based learning.