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Work Hard or Play Hard? Degree Class, Student Leadership and Employment Opportunities

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  • Stijn Baert
  • Dieter Verhaest

Abstract

This study investigates the impact on first hiring outcomes of two main curriculum vitae (CV) characteristics by which graduates with a tertiary education degree distinguish themselves from their peers: degree class and extra‐curricular activities. These characteristics were randomly assigned to 2,800 fictitious job applications that were sent to real vacancies in Belgium. Academic performance and extra‐curricular engagement enhance job interview rates by 7.0% (CI 95% [0.3%, 13.7%]) and 6.5% (CI 95% [−0.5%, 13.4%]), respectively. We did not find evidence for these CV characteristics to reinforce or reduce their effect.

Suggested Citation

  • Stijn Baert & Dieter Verhaest, 2021. "Work Hard or Play Hard? Degree Class, Student Leadership and Employment Opportunities," Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, Department of Economics, University of Oxford, vol. 83(4), pages 1024-1047, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:obuest:v:83:y:2021:i:4:p:1024-1047
    DOI: 10.1111/obes.12424
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    Cited by:

    1. Van Belle, Eva & Caers, Ralf & Cuypers, Laure & De Couck, Marijke & Neyt, Brecht & Van Borm, Hannah & Baert, Stijn, 2020. "What do student jobs on graduate CVs signal to employers?," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 75(C).
    2. Baert, Stijn & Picchio, Matteo, 2021. "A signal of (Train)ability? Grade repetition and hiring chances," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 188(C), pages 867-878.
    3. Piopiunik, Marc & Schwerdt, Guido & Simon, Lisa & Woessmann, Ludger, 2020. "Skills, signals, and employability: An experimental investigation," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 123(C).
    4. Sterkens, Philippe & Caers, Ralf & De Couck, Marijke & Geamanu, Michael & Van Driessche, Victor & Baert, Stijn, 2021. "Costly Mistakes: Why and When Spelling Errors in Resumes Jeopardise Interview Chances," GLO Discussion Paper Series 899, Global Labor Organization (GLO).

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J23 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Labor Demand
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • I23 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Higher Education; Research Institutions
    • C93 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Design of Experiments - - - Field Experiments

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