Elementary schoolteacher is the most favored job among junior and senior high school students, according to a survey by the Korea Research Institute for Vocational Education and Training. The institute polled 6,291 youngsters.
Some 8.8 percent of the surveyed students chose elementary schoolteacher, followed by doctor (4.5 percent), civil servant (4.1 percent), and junior/senior high school teacher (4 percent).
"Being a schoolteacher entails job security, so the profession is popular among teens who feel it is not only stable but pays well," said Lim Eon at the institute.
In a similar survey on the professional aspirations of high school students back in 2001, junior/senior high schoolteacher ranked at the top with 12.7 percent of the surveyed students, while elementary schoolteacher ranked fifth with 2.7 percent.
"The preference for teaching, which is deemed secure and familiar to them, has continued to rise since the 1997 Asian financial crisis," Im said. "But it seems that teaching elementary school students has become more popular recently since high school teachers have a heavier workload involving university entrance and other counseling responsibilities."
A comparison of the 2001 survey with this year's survey shows a growing preference for secure jobs such as nurses, police or professional soldiers, while preferences for business have waned.