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  • 82 Percent of Class of 2015 Employed or in Grad School

    June 15, 2016 | By NACE Staff

    Graduate Outcomes
    Researchers review various spreadsheets of data, investigating the percentage of employed college graduates from the class of 2015.

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    A majority of the college Class of 2015 landed a job or were accepted into a continuing education program within six months of graduation, according to NACE’s Class of 2015 First-Destination Survey report.

    The survey found that 58.4 percent of 2015 bachelor’s degree graduates were employed full time, while 17.7 percent had been accepted into graduate or professional school, and 6 percent were working part time. (See Figure 1.)

    The survey also shows that 2015 bachelor’s degree graduates outpaced their 2014 counterparts in securing full-time employment and continuing education. In fact, a greater percentage of 2015 graduates “landed” successfully than those who graduated in 2014; fewer 2015 graduates are working part time, still seeking employment, or still seeking continuing education than was the case with the previous crop of graduates.

    Additional highlights for bachelor’s degree graduates from the survey include:

    • By region, graduates in New England (68.5 percent) and the Plains (67.8 percent) fared best in terms of overall employment outcomes, while those in the Southwest (50.2 percent) and Far West (46.8 percent) were least likely to be employed full- or part time.
    • Graduates studying the computer sciences enjoyed the highest full-time employment rate (72 percent). However, that is down 1.2 percent in comparison to Class of 2014 computer sciences graduates.
    • Full-time employment figures for Class of 2015 social sciences, English, and history majors all improved over those posted for the Class of 2014.

    For NACE’s Class of 2015 First-Destination Survey, 279 colleges and universities nationwide, representing nearly half a million graduates, provided data for Class of 2015 associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree graduates. Overall, data were reported for nearly 244,000 bachelor’s degree graduates in 34 broad disciplines and 185 majors. An executive summary of the survey, which also covered first destinations for associate, master’s, and doctoral degree-level graduates, is available on NACEWeb.

    Figure 1: First Destinations—Class of 2015 vs. Class of 2014

    First Destination Percent Class of 2015 Percent Class of 2014
    Employed, full time 58.4% 55.4%
    Employed, part time 6.0% 6.6%
    Graduate/professional school/continuing education 17.7% 16.4%
    Still seeking employment 11.0% 13.9%
    Still seeking education 3.2% 3.6%
    Not seeking 1.9% 2.2%
    Source: Class of 2015 First-Destination Survey, National Association of Colleges and Employers. All data are for bachelor’s degree graduates and represent initial post-graduation outcomes as of December 31, 2015.