Young women are losing faith in the higher education system because of rocketing tuition fees, high levels of graduate unemployment and a perception they have little chance of landing their dream job, according to a new study.
Almost half of women with a degree said they would not go to university if they had the chance again, with many unable to save any money because they are saddled with student debt.
Most of the 1,300 women surveyed by Cosmopolitan magazine said landing their dream job was "almost impossible", with only 14% feeling secure in their current employment.
Almost half of those questioned said they faced worse financial troubles than their parents' generation, a similar number were still living at home and one in seven were postponing getting married because they could not afford a wedding.
"It's never been harder to be a young woman with ambition," said Cosmopolitan editor Louise Court, adding: "Understandably, women are angry and frustrated about their future and this is having a damaging effect on their self-esteem.
"We're urging women across the country to never give up, recognise that now can be a time for real opportunity and to always follow their dreams."