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Scottish graduates 'told to dumb down CVs'
Jobcentre staff have advised university graduates to "dumb down" their CVs in order to find work, a survey has suggested.
Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) said two-thirds of the students it surveyed found the Jobcentre unhelpful in finding work and only 1% said it was helpful in finding graduate-level work.
The Department of Work and Pensions said advisers would not tell candidates to lie about their qualifications. A spokeswoman said: "With any job application, our advisers will recommend that the candidate tailors the presentation of their skills and experience to the job they are applying for."
CAS said many graduates were apparently told by Jobcentre staff that their qualifications actually deterred employers and advised to leave degrees off their CVs altogether to secure "survival jobs".
The CAS report, Degrees Of Insecurity, surveyed 1,000 Scottish graduates to discover how they have coped in the recession.
One 25-year-old law graduate told CAS: "At the (Jobcentre) group meetings we were encouraged to leave any degree off the CV to help us find more plentiful unskilled work. Nobody would employ me as a cleaner if I had a degree. I was told to stop looking for graduate work and take a 'survival' job."
A Department of Work and Pensions spokeswoman responded: "There's lots of help out there for jobseekers, including young people and graduates. Jobcentre Plus advisers can help with skills and training, work experience is available for those who need it and the New Enterprise Allowance helps claimants set up their own business."
NUS Scotland president Robin Parker said: "Getting a degree remains a huge advantage for getting a job and still very worthwhile more generally. It's those without qualifications or with low-level qualifications that will be worst off in this unemployment crisis".