SMC Graduate Destination Survey shows an increase in students seeking employment
Liam Price | Friday, May 13, 2022
Each year, the Career Crossings Office at Saint Mary’s administers the Graduate Destination Survey to examine post-graduation plans of its graduating class. The survey provides the College with information to compare with data collected later in the graduates’ careers, director of the Career Crossings Office Stacie Jeffirs said.
“This is just a snapshot in time but then we do a one-year survey where we collect data six months and one year out,” Jeffirs said. “Then we do a five-year survey just to see where they’ve progressed to after five years of graduating from Saint Mary’s.”
Each year, the survey asks the same questions about activities after graduation and how graduates landed on their specific occupations.
“Our questions are pretty standard. Every year we try to collect the same data,” Jeffirs said.
Jeffirs said the survey also seeks to offer guidance for students.
“For those that might need additional guidance and assistance as they’re finishing up their last semester here at Saint Mary’s, we can reach out to those students as well,” she said.
This year’s survey concluded that 70% of graduating seniors plan on entering the workforce, 20% plan to further their education in graduate or professional school, 5% will participate in service programs and 5% fell in the “other” category, indicating they plan on participating in post-grad internships and fellowships or entering the military.
Compared to last year’s class, the survey found a 5% bump in the workforce category, Jeffirs said. The bump, she explained, “makes sense because the job market is great right now so most people are probably going to want to go out and work.”
Graduate school plans showed the same percentage as last year’s data, she said. It was plans for service, however, that dropped the most with the increase in students seeking employment.
Numbers from the survey generally remain consistent year after year, Jeffirs said, so the change is notable. However, with the current job market, Jeffirs and others foresaw the change.
“Most of our years previous to this have been pretty steady in terms of numbers,” Jeffirs said. “It’s significant, but it’s not surprising. Given the job market I kind of already expected that this would happen earlier in the academic year.”