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Student employment and school-to-work transition: the Russian case

Fedor Dudyrev (National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia)
Olga Romanova (National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia)
Pavel Travkin (National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 27 May 2020

Issue publication date: 8 June 2020




The paradigm of school-to-work transition is changing, with an increasing number of students combining work and study. Furthermore, there exists some mixed evidence for the impact of student employment on future earnings and employment likelihood. The purpose of the present paper is to examine additional evidence that would shed light on the pros and cons of student work as a function of its type (i.e. whether or not it matches the student's field of study). We also discuss practical implications for specialists who facilitate the transition of graduates to the job market.


This is a quantitative study based on the National Statistical Survey of Graduate Employment (SGE) conducted by the Russian Federal State Statistic Service (Rosstat) in 2016. Statistical methods of data analysis were used (logistic regression, Mincer equations). The analysis is based on two dependent variables as follows: data on graduates' employment and their monthly earnings.


We show that student work is a predictor of higher employment chances for both university and vocational college graduates. Moreover, the highest employment chances are associated with student work that is well-matched to the field of study. As for earnings, the greatest returns are again associated with work related to education. Jobs unrelated to education significantly correlate with earnings only for university graduates.

Research limitations/implications

An important limitation of the present research is that it estimates the effects of student employment over a rather short-term period by using data on employment just after graduation and only starting salaries. These findings evoke the need for further study of graduate competencies and the process of their acquisition.

Practical implications

Our findings suggest some directions for education development. The results can be used to analyze governmental and other stakeholders' initiatives in the field of vocational and higher education.

Social implications

The research results can be used by a wide range of stakeholders interested in the employment of graduates as a source of data for designing measures for improving graduates' employability.


Our study obtained data on the impact of student work on later employment. Tertiary graduates get returns from all work experience, while VET graduates earn more only if their student employment was consistent with their field of study.



This work is an output of a research project implemented as part of the Basic Research Program at the National Research University Higher School of Economics (HSE University).


Dudyrev, F., Romanova, O. and Travkin, P. (2020), "Student employment and school-to-work transition: the Russian case", Education + Training, Vol. 62 No. 4, pp. 441-457.



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