'Seven Days' takes a look at the shortage of job opportunities for those who have completed a third level education course.

Reporter Bill O'Herlihy meets some first year students full of hope for the future and recent graduates who have had to face the reality of settling for any job they can find.

Among the 1,200 Freshers at Trinity College is 18 year old Gerry Conway from Dublin who has enrolled in the School of Medicine. This is a career decision for Gerry. 17 year old Gregory O'Connor registered for History and Political Science.

Two students who know what they want are certain they'll succeed. 

One in ten 18 year olds in Ireland goes to University. Demand for courses is high and places are limited. Enrollments at universities have doubled in the past 10 years. 

At University College Dublin there are over 11,000 students.  Bill O'Herlihy sets out to find out what people expect of university and why do they go.

Deirdre O'Higgins a psychology student from Cabra explains why she decided to attend university and is critical of the career guidance that she received.

I really want to be somebody.

18 year old David McKenna, educated at Sandymount High, didn't want to go to university as he wanted to work in television. However, he is now studying an Arts course and is unsure how relevant his course will be to his future career in communications.  

While Deirdre and David are serious about university, they are both unsure about their future career possibilities.  Rising unemployment, recession, and cut backs don't bode well for the career prospects of graduates. 

Experts talk of seven lean years for graduates.

Recent graduate 23 year old Sheila Aiken hopes to avoid the emigration trail and wants to stay in Dublin. Educated to degree level, Sheila is currently working as a waitress in 'Jonathans' restaurant on Grafton Street. This is not how Sheila imagined she would end up having qualified with a degree in German Literature. While she considers herself lucky to have a job at all in the current economic situation, her mother is quite embarrassed to have a daughter with a degree working as a waitress. Describing university life as somewhat divorced from reality Sheila says

They're just churning people out at college for jobs that simply don't exist.

Sheila has applied for many different kinds of jobs but without success and comments

I'm the wrong size and shape to be an air hostess.

This 'Seven Days' report by Bill O'Herlihy was broadcast on 12 November 1971.