Members of the Wackerle Career and Leadership Center staff include, in front, Marnie Dugan and Michelle Merritt. In back are Stephanie Kinkaid, Billy Bernard and Rhonda Spence.
As anxious members of Monmouth College’s graduating class of 2012 count down the days until their entrance into “the real world,” they can take comfort in the success of Monmouth’s Class of 2011.
Of the 227 graduates responding to an annual placement survey by the college, 97 percent were either employed within six months or in graduate school. Of those alumni, 79 percent indicated they were employed, while 21 percent were continuing their education.
“Our placement rate has remained consistent despite the lull in the economy,” said Stephanie Kinkaid, program coordinator of MC’s Wackerle Career and Leadership Center. The placement rate for Class of 2010 survey respondents was also 97 percent.
Careers chosen by Monmouth’s young professionals mirror figures compiled by the National Association of College Employers (NACE) in its most recent survey. Of 300,000 new graduates surveyed nationwide, retail trade and elementary/secondary schools were listed as the top two hiring industries. Among MC’s most recent graduating class, 31 percent landed positions in business or sales, while 24 percent found employment in education.
The continued growth of alumni groups has helped Monmouth College secure internships and connections for students.
“These connections help provide our students a competitive edge,” said Kinkaid, who noted that MC students put that edge to good use. “Our students are being chosen over others in large applicant pools because of the strong emphasis on skills and work ethic that Monmouth College provides.”
Of the 2011 graduates currently in graduate school, 11 are pursuing advanced degrees in medical fields. Seven are studying at the University of Illinois.
“Trends show that more pre-med students are gravitating toward occupational therapy, physical therapy and physician’s assistant programs, and our students are evidence of this trend,” said Kinkaid.
“Additionally, NACE reports in its 2012 Job Outlook that employers are looking for students who can offer leadership skills as well as the ability to work as part of a team,” she said. “Monmouth’s Wackerle Center provides many opportunities for students to develop their leadership skills so that they will succeed personally and professionally. We believe our students can have an optimistic attitude, even in this uncertain economy.”