More than half of working Canadians want a degree/diploma do-over

More than half of working Canadians want a degree/diploma do-over

After years of hard work and dedication to their studies, college and university graduates are eager to start their careers and put their education to good use. But, will the time and money they invested pay off? A recent survey from Monster Canada found that more than half (52 per cent) of working Canadians would opt to pursue a different degree or diploma, if they could go back in time and begin their post-secondary schooling again.


Even though the majority of working Canadians want a degree/diploma do-over, less than one-third (31 per cent) reported they would stay the course and pursue their same degree/diploma, while one-in-ten would go straight into the workforce.


“If you’re not finding satisfaction in your selected industry, it’s never too late to course-correct your career,” says Sheryl Boswell, Director of Marketing, Monster Canada. “Canadians need to remember there is no age limit to learning and development, whether you want to increase your skills in your current field or pursue new opportunities.”

Canadians crave a challenge

The survey, conducted by Leger, found that most working Canadians feel qualified – or overqualified – for their jobs. Specifically, two-thirds (67 per cent) feel appropriately qualified, while one-quarter (26 per cent) report feeling overqualified.


Younger Canadians are one of the groups most likely to feel overqualified for their current position. Three-in-ten (29 per cent) millennials (18-34 years old) say they are overqualified. On the other of this coin, this sentiment regarding over-qualification is also shared by those in the 55-64 age group (29 per cent).


Millennials are also the group most likely to go straight into workforce if given the choice to start over, with one-in-seven reporting this.


“It’s important that employees feel challenged both at the beginning and the end of their careers,” says Boswell. “For millennials in their first role, they want to feel valued and challenged, while those on the brink of retirement have years of experience that they are eager to use to contribute to their company’s overall success.”

Is it worth it?

Six-in-ten working Canadians agree that their most recent/current job is directly related to their education, and 60 per cent say their degree was worth obtaining.


Even though the majority of working Canadians feel their degree was worth it, of those who felt their degree wasn’t worth obtaining, one-in-five (21 per cent) said instead of a do-over they would go straight into the workforce.

“It’s great to see the majority of working Canadians were able to secure a job that directly relates to their studies,” says Boswell. “Education can be a great foundation for a successful career, but not all fields require a post-secondary degree. Evaluating your options and the job requirements before you’ve completed your education are good ways to avoid feeling the need for a degree do-over.”


Women more likely to choose a different route

Slightly more working women (54 per cent) report they would pursue a different degree/diploma if given the option for a do-over, compared to 51 per cent of men. Accordingly, working men are more likely to say their most recent/current job relates to their education (63 per cent compared to 56 per cent).


Gender differences also come into play when asked if their degree/diploma was worth obtaining. Forty per cent of women feel their degree/diploma wasn’t worth obtaining compared to 36 per cent of men.


“Women may experience a career path that isn’t entirely linear due to major life events, such as starting a family, being a caregiver or returning to school at a later age,” says Boswell. “While you might feel like your education doesn’t directly relate to your current job, a post-secondary education is about more than just the field you studied. It is an opportunity to grow, learn and explore, and even if there isn’t a direct connection now, it could help you find better opportunities in the future.”


To learn more about the survey and tips or advice on how to find a job that relates to your degree or diploma, visit


About Monster Worldwide

Monster Worldwide, Inc. is a global leader in connecting people to jobs, wherever they are. For more than 20 years, Monster has helped people improve their lives with better jobs, and employers find the best talent. Today, the company offers services in more than 40 countries, providing some of the broadest, most sophisticated job seeking, career management, recruitment and talent management capabilities. Monster continues its pioneering work of transforming the recruiting industry with advanced technology using intelligent digital, social and mobile solutions, including our flagship website® and a vast array of products and services. For more information visit