University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

Does commuting to university influence students’ personal and professional development and the likelihood of graduate level employment?

Emblen-Perry, Kay ORCID:, Nichol, Lynn and Ross, Catharine ORCID: (2020) Does commuting to university influence students’ personal and professional development and the likelihood of graduate level employment? The International Journal of Professional Management, 15 (5). ISSN 2042-2341

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The current UK university system is based on the traditional home-university model of transition that has customarily seen students moving away from home to study for their degree. However, within the current massified and marketised conditions of higher education the number of students choosing to commute to study whilst living at home is increasing annually. This may be driven by a number of pressures, including the costs of university life, part-time work, family responsibilities and/or personal confidence.
Whilst commuting to study may be a financially rational decision that provides commuter students with a different way of attending to meet their distinctive learning needs, research suggests that commuter students may also experience emotional and social challenges that may influence their personal and professional development, which in turn may impact on their ability to access and contribute to graduate employment.
This paper explores the potential benefits and challenges experienced by commuter students and suggests that their personal circumstances and the tensions between home and university life may influence the likelihood of, and their ability to, develop personally and professionally in the way that graduate employers expect and desire. Consequently, commuter students may secure fewer graduate roles than their peers opting for the traditional home-university model of transition and employers may miss good candidates who possess the different but equally valuable employment skills and experience that commuter students are able to offer. This paper may be of interest to universities, current undergraduates and potential employers seeking the personal and professional development of future graduate employees.

Item Type: Article
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Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: Commuter students, personal and professional development, traditional home-university model of transition, IRWRG
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > Worcester Business School
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Depositing User: Kay Emblen-Perry
Date Deposited: 23 Jun 2020 08:36
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2023 14:49

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