For SU Class of 2005 grads, salaries highest since 2001, according to placement report
For SU Class of 2005 grads, salaries highest since 2001, according to placement reportMay 02, 2006Carol K. Masiclatclkim@syr.edu
About 92 percent of bachelor’s degree recipients from Syracuse University’s Class of 2005 landed full-time jobs or attended graduate school last year, and 92 percent of those employed say their jobs are related to their career goals. These are among the findings of the SU Class of 2005 Placement Report, released recently by the University’s Center for Career Services.
“The results for the Class of 2005 once again reflect a strong job market for SU graduates,” says Michael Cahill, director of the Center for Career Services. “In addition to the data, we are also finding that employers are increasingly impressed with the quality of education and experience of Syracuse University students. Combine this with the projections that employers will increase hiring this year and the prospects for the SU Class of 2006 look bright.”
Career Services surveyed 2,407 SU alumni who received bachelor’s degrees in December 2004 and May, June and August 2005. The online survey was e-mailed to graduates in October 2005, and reminders were sent in November and December 2005 and January 2006. Of those contacted, 1,144 alumni responded, representing about 48 percent of the graduating class.
Seventy-four percent of graduates reported finding full-time employment in 2005, a slight dip from the previous year’s figure of 77 percent. However, in 2005, average salaries for SU grads reached their highest levels since 2001 (when average salaries reached a high of $34,851). The boost ends a three-year slide that followed 10 years of steady increases. The Class of 2005 earned an average of $36,800, a 6 percent increase over the previous year’s average. The salary increase, coupled with strong employment numbers, is a good sign for graduates, indicating a continuing recovery from the recession of 2001-02.
New to this year’s survey was a question that measured when graduates secured their positions. Consistent with national data, the center found that most students graduated before obtaining jobs. For 2005 grads who reported that they were employed full time, 41 percent indicated that they had jobs prior to graduation. But by six months after graduation, 90 percent were employed. The School of Information Studies had the highest percentage of students (69 percent) reporting that they received positions prior to graduation. The L.C. Smith College of Engineering and Computer Science (ECS) followed with 66 percent, and the Martin J. Whitman School of Management came in third at 59 percent.
Overall placement rate (full-time employment plus graduate school attendance) was 92 percent, a slight decrease from 2004’s rate of 95 percent, but still considerably higher than 89 percent in 2003, 90.5 percent in 2002 and 90 percent for 2001.
Perceived quality of employment for SU grads remains high. For last year’s graduates, 92 percent of those employed felt their position was in line with their career goals. This level of satisfaction has been reported for the last three years.
When it comes to getting hired, networking, pursuing non-advertised job leads and applying directly to the organization remain the most effective career search tools, leading to 39 percent of full-time jobs. Internships continued to be an effective employment strategy, resulting in 13 percent of hires. Seventeen percent of students found jobs by way of on-campus recruiting, a slight increase over last year’s figure. Students of Whitman (38 percent) and ECS (26 percent) benefited the most from on-campus recruiting. Technology is an increasingly important tool in the job-hunting process. Fifteen percent of students from the Class of 2005 found their positions online, an increase over the reported 13 percent in 2004 and 11 percent in 2003.
The number of respondents bound for graduate school held steady at 18 percent. Of those who reported that they are attending graduate school full time, 29 percent are enrolled at Syracuse University, a 3 percent increase from the previous year. Fourteen percent of students pursuing graduate education are in law school, a decrease of 2 percent from last year. Seven percent report that they are attending medical programs, down from 12 percent in 2004.
In 2005, more SU graduates decided to keep their knowledge and skills in New York state. Fifty-two percent of full-time employees are working in New York, a 3 percent increase over the year before. However, 9 percent reported staying in the Central New York area to work, a 2 percent drop from 2004. Nineteen percent will work in states adjoining New York, decreasing 4 percent from the previous year’s figure. The Class of 2005 found employment in 39 states and several foreign countries, with 2 percent reporting employment abroad. Of those who plan to attend graduate school, 48 percent will do so in New York, with another 16 percent choosing schools in adjoining states.
Cahill reports that the picture for the Class of 2006 shows strong prospects. An April 2006 survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) revealed that employers expect to increase their hiring of 2005-06 graduates by 13.8 percent. Sixty percent of employers reported that they expect to hire more new college grads in 2005-06 than they did in 2004-05. For more information on the NACE survey, visit http://www.naceweb.org.