Posted on

China’s Young Elite Clamber for Government Jobs. Some Come to Regret It.


In Beijing and cities across China, as many as 2.6 million job applicants, including graduates from the country’s top universities, will report to testing centers in early January to face exceedingly long odds and compete for 37,100 entry-level government jobs.The national exam is an annual rite for young Chinese, some of whom spend thousands of dollars for prep classes and many hours cramming for it. It comes at a fraught time. It was supposed to be given in early December, then was canceled at the last minute. The government cited Covid-19 lockdowns, but the exam was postponed days after protests in more than a dozen cities against China’s severe pandemic restrictions.Jobs in China’s vast Civil Service have long been considered prestigious launching pads for a career. They include entry-level roles typical in any economy, like clerks in municipal government, and some that are unique to China, such as assisting in the country’s extensive censorship bureaucracy.But these days the jobs are also coveted out of necessity, because it’s especially hard for new graduates to find employment at private companies.Nearly one in five people …

Read More