February 6, 2019

A new survey shows 99 percent of University of Sioux Falls graduates from the undergraduate Class of 2018 were either employed or attending graduate or professional school within six months of graduation.

“An education from University of Sioux Falls prepares our students for excelling in the workplace and contributing to their communities,” said USF President Brett Bradfield. “We are incredibly proud of our graduates and believe that our high-quality, intensely personal, Christ-centered educational experience empowers our graduates to do more and be more, long into their lives and careers.

USF’s tuition reset for undergraduate students—rolled out for the fall semester of 2018—led to a record number of undergraduate students in 2018. The tuition reset was a tangible step toward helping even more students achieve their dreams in a more accessible and affordable manner. 

Other highlights from survey respondents include that 76 percent of 2018 grads started their careers in South Dakota, and of those, 92 percent lived in Sioux Falls or within 30 miles.

Unsurprising because in 2018, Forbes named Sioux Falls the top small city in America for business and careers, and pointed out the cost of living is below the national average. USF grads reported working in 16 states.

Results are equally as impressive for USF master’s degree programs in business administration and education. The same study found 99% of graduates secured a position or continued their education within six months of graduation.

Employers can recruit USF talent in a variety of ways, including Purple Briefcase, USF’s online employment database. All students and alumni have access to the no-cost platform online. Employers wanting to get started are encouraged to inquire by emailing asc@usiouxfalls.edu.

“I left USF feeling prepared to enter the workforce,” said Travis Balt, a Class of 2018 graduate, who agreed to share his experience. “In addition to my coursework, the Academic Success Center’s services like Purple Briefcase, mock interviews, and cover letter and resume building helped me feel confident in going to my first interview knowing exactly what to expect from employers, and how to ask questions that further advance professional and engaging conversations with potential employers.” 

The survey also showed four of every five students are getting hands-on and experiential learning in the form of internships, volunteer experiences, campus-based research, practicums, clinical experiences, field experiences and/or student teaching experiences. 

“Our students benefit from the opportunity to gain experience through experiential education,” said Jessica Carlson, Assistant Director of the Thomas Kilian Academic Success Center.  “We feel that it provides them with tangible experience that they can add to their resumes and take with them into the workforce, often right here in Sioux Falls for their first careers.”

USF Career Services partners with faculty, alumni and community partners to help students locate positions, write resumes, prepare for interviews and apply to graduate school.

Nineteen percent of respondents reported continuing their education, for example going on to graduate school. In addition, students reported 100% placement rates in over three-fourths of majors.

Each year USF Career Services staff surveys the USF graduating class to assess their post-graduation activities. The methodology of this survey aligns with best practices that are outlined by the National Association of Colleges and Employers.

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