Life After Eastern

Survey of class of 2014 paints a positive picture

Almost a year has passed since they left Eastern as graduates, and the time has come for the class of 2014 to update Eastern on their next steps in life.

The Office for Talent and Career Development recently completed its post-graduation survey of the class of 2014. The survey was administered primarily via email, though students were also contacted through Facebook and LinkedIn.

Each year, graduates enter into the work world, armed with their recently acquired degrees and college experiences.
Each year, graduates enter into the work world, armed with their recently acquired degrees and college experiences. | The Waltonian
The response has increased each year, thanks in part to the Office’s Qualtrics survey software, and this year’s response rate of 56 percent is the highest to date. Even more importantly, the numbers tell a story of success for Eastern graduates in an increasingly competitive job market. Of the 179 survey respondents, 94 percent have found employment or are pursuing some form of graduate studies. An underrated number behind this one, however, is the 88 percent of students who have found satisfaction in their current positions.

“This validates everything that students have done,” says Sarah Todd, director of the Office for Talent and Career Development. “It’s our way to kind of see the fruits of your labor. To see the impact you’re having on the world now that you have left Eastern.”

“When you consider the environment students are entering today, it speaks to the quality of the student that Eastern is investing in.”

Eastern has also ensured that the six percent who are continuing to seek their next stage of life do not have to do so alone. Todd has personally reached out to all of the students who responded that they are still seeking, and her office has offered any help they can give. “This is an opportunity for us to reach out to alums who may feel confused,” Todd explains. “Our talent and career services don’t disappear after [students] graduate.”

A note of caution when reading these statistics: the student is taking a snapshot of one day in his/her life. As Todd points out, the student could easily begin a job the next day, and her office would never know. For this reason, she emphasizes the importance of Eastern having up-to-date contact information for its students after they graduate.

There were a number of other noteworthy statistics in the report. In the section on geographic location of graduates, 63 percent of respondents reported that they still live in Pennsylvania, and a surprising four percent are living internationally. The responses also indicate that a 20 percent of students are actually employed in a job unrelated to their majors, while 65 percent are employed in relation to their majors.

All universities are required to post their findings online. The full report for Eastern’s graduates will be made available on the Office of Talent and Career Development’s section of Eastern’s website. Along with the raw statistics are the names of companies with whom alumni are working, as well as quotes describing their experiences. This is the part Todd most looks forward to.

“This survey takes eight minutes,” she says, “but it is giving me a story I can tell for years to come.”

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