Surveys show where career success found


Matt Harkins, Staff Writer

The National Association of Colleges and Employers produces a job outlook every year for college students to see which employers will be hiring the most.  Also, the Pitt-Johnstown Career Services office employees do a survey of their own each year of the previous year’s graduates.

In a yearly survey the Career Services office uses, out of the 554 UPJ students who graduated in 2010 434 responded and 94 percent of them had obtained employment, continued their education or joined the military after they graduated.

The top two divisions whose graduates responded and have the best placement rate are Nursing/Health Science and Natural Sciences, according to the Career Services class of 2010 follow-up survey.

The average starting salary according to the survey is $35,463, which is a decrease of $2,824 from 2009.  According to the survey, the division with the highest starting salary of $52,633 is Engineering Technology.

According to the 2012 job outlook survey done every year by the association, businesses are approaching the hiring of this year’s college graduates with caution.

The companies who responded to the survey who have plans to increase hiring of graduates point to having more business or they are experiencing company growth.  Also, some companies are looking to replace retiring workers and an aging work force.

The companies who say they plan to decrease the number of hires or approach the hiring process cautiously attribute it to budget concerns or no openings for new college graduates this year.

Gender still plays a major role in job offers depending on the area of division.

Women are more likely to be hired in the Communications, Education, and Home Economics areas.

Men are more likely to be hired into the fields of Engineering, Agricultural/Natural Resources and Computer Sciences.

According to the NACE survey, the two industries who plan on hiring the most college graduates in 2012 are Finance, Insurance and Real Estate and Accounting Services.  The three industries that plan on hiring the least college graduates are Utilities, Construction and Information.

Also included in the NACE survey, employers in the Northeast region plan on hiring the most college graduates this year.  The employers in the West region plan on hiring the least college graduates this year.

Some students from UPJ’s class of 2010 were fortunate enough to not have to use career services to help them find and apply for a job.

“I actually didn’t have to use career services,” said former UPJ student Abby Gearhart.  “I was fortunate enough to be offered a job before I graduated.”

She is currently the Residence Life Coordinator here at UPJ.