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The future looks bright for SU grads, according to placement report
The future looks bright for SU grads, according to placement reportMay 09, 2005Carol K. Masiclatclkim@syr.edu
Ninety-five percent of bachelor’s degree recipients from Syracuse University’s class of 2004 landed full-time jobs or attended graduate school last year, and 91 percent of those employed say their jobs are related to their career goals. These are among the findings of the SU Class of 2004 Placement Report, released recently by the University’s Center for Career Services.
“The results for the class of 2004 saw a marked improvement over the past few years and reflected the increase in entry-level hiring predicted by most experts,” says Michael Cahill, director of the Center for Career Services. “For the first time in five years there was an increase in the percentage of students who reported working full time and average salaries bounced back after two years on the decline.”
Career Services surveyed more than 2,300 SU alumni who received bachelor’s degrees in December 2003 and May, June and August 2004. The survey was conducted by mail and e-mail during October, November and December 2004. More than 1,100 alumni responded, representing about 50 percent of the graduating class. Cahill says the results of the survey are very encouraging. They indicate a significant improvement in the entry-level job market and show that the vast majority of SU graduates are able to obtain meaningful employment or graduate school admission within six months of graduation.
Seventy-seven percent of graduates reported finding full-time employment in 2004, the highest rate in four years. The number of respondents bound for graduate school held steady at 18 percent. Overall placement rate (full-time employment plus graduate school attendance) was 95 percent, an increase from 89 percent in 2003.
According to the survey, networking and pursuing non-advertised job leads remain the most effective career search tools, leading to 43 percent of full-time jobs. “This result underscores the importance of our counseling and programming services geared toward helping students more effectively network and pursue non-advertised leads,” says Cahill. Other tools for securing full-time jobs included internships (14 percent) and on-campus recruiting (15 percent), rates consistent with last year’s figures.
One of the most promising findings of the survey is the marked rebound of graduates’ average salary. In 2004, the average salary was $34,770, up from $33,679 in 2003 and $34,705 in 2002. This year’s increase ends a two-year slide that followed 10 years of steady increases.
As in past years, most SU graduates are keeping their knowledge and skills in or near New York State: 48 percent of full-time employees are working in New York, including 11 percent in Central New York, both down one percentage point from last year. Twenty-three percent work in states adjoining New York. Of those who plan to attend graduate school, 51 percent will do so in New York, with another 19 percent choosing schools in adjoining states. Twenty-six percent of those continuing their education in New York will attend SU.
Cahill reports that the picture for the class of 2005 shows strong prospects. An August 2004 survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) revealed that employers expect to increase their hiring of 2004-05 graduates by 13.1 percent. An update issued in December 2004 showed that the projections held for 60 percent of employers and increased for 25 percent. For more information on the NACE survey, visit http://www.naceweb.org; for more information on Career Services or to view class of 2004 survey results online, visit http://students.syr.edu/careerservices/index.html.