Survey Reveals Only 4% of Students Recommend Their Career Center
April 16, 2018 – San Francisco: Online job-matching marketplace and professional development platform, Vocate, publishes results from a survey asking over 5,000 college students to rate their university career center. The data allowed Vocate to rank universities according to their Net Promoter Score (NPS) and move closer to answering the question: Are career centers doing their job? Results show that some are, most aren’t.
- Only 4% of all career centers had a positive NPS
- Surprisingly, smaller and less well-known schools tend to have more recommended career centers. Top 3 include Centre College and Biola University, with Harvard notably bucking this trend.
- Lowest NPS: UMass Amherst, University of Oregon, University of Hartford
With 4% of all career centers having a positive NPS, the survey suggests 96% of students are not receiving the institution support needed for the school-work transition. This is a concerning statistic when considering the 20.4 million college students enrolled in US universities as of fall 2017.
The issue of student employability is a heated topic in higher education and the job market at large. Tuition for attending college is rising while the promise of payoff is falling short. In the Federal Reserve’s study on Education Debt and Student Loans, the mean student debt accrued was $32,731 and 38% of respondents reported deferment. The Federal Reserve also reported in January 2018 that about 1 in 3 college graduates are underemployed, reaching 44% among recent graduates. This means that at least 34% of graduates are either underpaid or have a job that does not require a college degree.
The Vocate survey results demonstrate where colleges are lacking and how higher education administrators cannot – and perhaps should not – be the only institutional support for the school-work transition.
“We all know that career centers are often underfunded, under-resourced and ill-equipped to help students figure out what career path is right for them,” says Vocate CEO Alex Tonelli. “I believe higher education administrators do not have a comprehensive understanding of the private sector, which creates a disconnect where students are feeling pain, confusion and isolation. Technology offers scalability of educational tools and artificial intelligence allows for the possibility of guiding students and employers to each other more effectively. The paradigm hasn’t changed in a really long time and it’s our believe that we now have the tools to take a major step forward.”
These surveys were conducted online as part of an opt-in exercise through the Vocate platform. The results include responses from students and graduates from universities across the United States collected over a 6 month time frame with a margin of error of less than 2%. Specifically, 5,720 responses were collected between July 25, 2017 and January 25, 2018 and one could say with a 95% probability that the overall results have sampling errors of +/- 1.90 percentage points. Sampling error for data from sub-samples is higher and varies.
Founded in 2015 and headquartered in San Francisco, Vocate is the technological evolution of the university career center, bringing students and employers together in a job-matching platform, using artificial intelligence to educate and evaluate. Students are not receiving the support and professional development they need to make a smooth transition into the workforce. Vocate’s product solves this problem by allowing users the opportunity to connect with potential career paths and learn the skills they need to standout in the marketplace; at the same time, they learn how to edit their resumes, interview and more. Moreover, employers can use this as an avenue for recruiting top and diverse talent.