With global markets in turmoil, should our students fear that graduate programmes might be cut? No, is the resounding answer.
Ben Reeves, director of the Association of Graduate Employers, says he has had no hint of anything being frozen or shut down. Dawn White, national president of the National Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services, says none of the big financial institutions have cancelled their 2009 graduate expos.
ANZ and Westpac say their intake is the same as last year. Melissa Collins, executive manager for early leadership programmes at CBA, adds: "We've seen no change in our intake. Our summer intern programme is slightly larger than last year's and we've made no changes to our 2009 intake. We next go to market in February next year so are not anticipating changes, if any, until then."
"We've already hired our grads for February and we have no changes planned," says a St George spokeswoman.
It's the same story at the globals
UBS isn't making any cuts for 2009, either. Monica Sekulov, graduate recruitment manager at Citigroup, says her firm has no plans to reduce numbers from last year: "In fact, given the importance of the programme and the opportunities we can provide throughout the firm, we plan to increase the number of summer interns to ensure we are getting the top talent from our universities," she adds.
Deutsche Bank agrees. Sally Whitman, the firm's head of graduate recruitment, Asia Pacific, says: "Our hiring targets for the class of 2009 are on par with those of 2008, with Asia Pacific recruits forming an increasing percentage of the global intake. We have remained a strong and consistent hirer on campus globally, even during market downturns. This is a demonstration of our commitment to keeping a strong and healthy graduate pipeline, which is imperative to the ongoing growth of our business."
The accountancy firms have no plans to reduce intakes, either. Chris Childs, national HR manager at KPMG, comments: "It's business as usual: we have about 450 grads ready to start in February and we are still actively recruiting both graduates and others."