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Gallup-Purdue Index Report 2016

Learn what more than 11,000 U.S. college graduates have to say about the value of career services, mentorship and whether their alma mater was a good place for various minority groups to study.

For many Americans, higher education has acted as a gatekeeper to the workforce and financial prosperity. Since 2010, 86% of incoming freshman have said that getting a better job represents a critical factor in their decision to enroll in college, compared with 73% of incoming freshmen between 2000 and 2009 who said the same. Yet Gallup has found that barely one in 10 business leaders in the U.S. feel strongly that a college education equips graduates with the skills and competencies their business needs, demonstrating a need for colleges and universities to innovate in order to prepare graduates for life outside of college.

In 2014, Gallup partnered with Purdue University and the Lumina Foundation to quantify outcomes for bachelor's degree holders nationally and to identify the critical undergraduate experiences that are related to these positive outcomes. The research is designed to provide universities with a road map for continuous improvement, focusing on those outcomes prospective students expect to achieve as a result of obtaining a bachelor's degree, including a great job and a great life.

In its third year, the national Gallup-Purdue Index explored several new topics relevant to higher education institutions, including the extent to which students are taking advantage of career services offerings; how helpful these offerings are to graduates; who mentored these students and connected them to important internship and work experiences; and how inclusive their campus was to racial and ethnic minorities and members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community. The Gallup-Purdue Index results are based on a random sample of 11,483 respondents with a bachelor's degree or higher, aged 18 and older, with internet access, living in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

Get the latest in university findings right here.

17%

of 2010 to 2016 graduates report that their career services office was very helpful.

88%

of recent graduates with exposure to diversity in college believe their alma mater was a good place for minorities to study.

Graduates who visited the career services office and said their interactions were very helpful are

5.8x

more likely to say their university prepared them well for life outside of college.

More incoming college freshman believe that finding a better job is directly tied to enrolling in college, although less business leaders feel strongly that a college education properly equips them.

Gallup-Purdue Index Report 2016 provides university leaders with important information about how they can continue to improve their policies and programs to give current and future students the experiences required to be successful outside of college.

Download this report to learn:

  • How often did college students visit their career services offices?
  • How helpful was the career services office to students?
  • Who mentored college graduates during their undergraduate experience?
  • Who helped these graduates obtain practical internships or jobs where they were able to apply what they were learning in the classroom?
  • Whether or not graduates believe their university was a good place to study for various minority groups, including racial and ethnic minorities and LGBT students

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