Home Institution

Washington University in St. Louis

Publication Date

Spring 2009

Program Name

Morocco: Migration Studies


This research project attempts to assess how migration fits into Moroccan university student perceptions of upward mobility and to what extent these perceptions relate to domestic opportunity and youth unemployment. The project likewise evaluates the extent to which emigration plays a role in university students’ personal aspirations and the reasons behind their desires to leave home or to remain in Morocco. Research data was acquired primarily through surveys conducted at the universities in Rabat, Casablanca, and Kenitra, and was supplemented by in-depth interviews with students from these universities and with organizations working in the areas of youth, development, and/or unemployment. Current findings from the survey and interviews were compared with findings from past literature on the same or similar topics, and in many ways this research paper serves as a discussion between the two. This project finds that a large number of Moroccan university students express the desire to either live abroad permanently or to finish education abroad; these desires relate closely to the job market in Morocco, the value of foreign experience and education for that job market, and the inability of higher education to adequately or completely provide students the technical skills needed to find employment domestically. While local organizations are making significant strides in terms of development and amelioration of youth unemployment, there remains much that can be done to facilitate youth entrance into the domestic job market and their hope for future employment here in Morocco. Though by no means comprehensive, this research project provides insight into the attitudes and aspirations of Moroccan university students and what local non-governmental and governmental organizations have to offer them.


Human Geography


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