Graduates lower their job sights
More university graduates, including holders of master's degrees, are competing for junior disciplined forces jobs.
The Correctional Services Department said its latest recruitment drive, the first since 1998, saw a rise in the number of graduates applying for the junior post of Assistant Officer II, which pays $13,250 a month.
The department received 2,508 applications and hired 96. The post, for which Secondary Three school leavers can apply, involves supervising jails, and training, drug addiction and illegal migrant detention centres.
Principal correctional officer (recruitment and training) Tse Siu-fung said that between five and 10 per cent of applicants were university graduates, compared with between two and three per cent in 1998.
'We have interviewed three applicants with master's degrees for assistant officer for the first time in our history and ended up recruiting one of them,' Mr Tse said. 'We were a bit surprised by the rise in the number of highly educated applicants applying for this junior position.'
The Immigration Department observed a similar trend when accepting applications for the $13,305-a-month post of Immigration Assistant between November and July after a 20-month recruitment freeze. Applicants must have finished Secondary Three with passes in Chinese and English.
Three of the 201 Immigration Assistants recruited in 1997 held a university degree, compared with 21 of the 116 recruited in the latest intake.
The department did not want to speculate on the reasons for the trend. 'But whatever they are, we have at least been able to hire more high-calibre recruits,' a spokesman said.