China’s Ministry of Education has taken the employment rate as one of the critical indicators to evaluate the performance of colleges and universities since early 2004.

The notice has placed pressure on these educational institutions. Consequently, these institutions require students to submit labor contracts before graduating. 

Citing Caixin, Liberty Times News reported that a finance-major student from a Henan college confirmed in early March that her school forces students to submit an employment agreement before receiving a graduation degree.

Furthermore, another student said that her school regulates those who do not sign a labor contract or do not register for higher study are not allowed to participate in graduation thesis defense. 

The newspaper further reported that the harsh measures of these institutions had prompted them to make fabricated contracts of employment. 

As a result, fake signature services have emerged on Taobao, a Chinese online shopping platform to meet students’ demands. According to service providers, students only have to spend 100 Yuan (around $15) for a complete online signing process. Then they will receive the receipt and stamp’s scanned copy. 

For 200 Yuan (around $30), the service provider promises a better package, including responding to Education Department’s verification. Several graduates confirmed that some had no choice but to purchase this service to graduate. 

Colleges and universities have various strategies to “help” students validate their employment documents to secure the employment rate. For example, they could provide students with nominal on-campus research assistant jobs. Then, students only need to sign an employment agreement, but they do not actually go to work.

According to the Chinese regime’s official estimate, Chinese college graduates will reach 10.76 million this year. The number has set a record high and signaled a potential unemployment tsunami.

Those who decide to leave big cities like Shanghai for their hometown or second or third-tier cities are unlikely to find jobs because too many small, medium and micro enterprises have collapsed under the Zero-Covid policy in the past two years.

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