Build Successful Lives

Build Successful Lives

A survey of more than 30,000 U.S. college graduates supports what Saint Mary’s has always believed—graduates thrive in the workplace and have a higher sense of well-being in life when they felt supported and mentored in college, and had caring professors who stirred their excitement for learning.

While only 14 percent of those responding to the 2014 Gallup/Purdue University survey felt their education delivered such outcomes, recent surveys of Saint Mary’s students show far better results.

In the National Study of Student Engagement, SMC seniors reported higher student-faculty interaction, and gains in quantitative reasoning and collaborative, integrative, reflective learning than other four-year Catholic institutions.

Students also indicated satisfaction and learning in areas central to Saint Mary’s mission, said Bethami Dobkin, provost and vice president for academic affairs. “These include connecting learning to social problems, understanding diverse perspectives and engaging others who are different from themselves.”

Three years into the College’s five-year Academic Blueprint, which requires that global competency be part of the undergraduate and graduate curriculum, Saint Mary’s has expanded study abroad opportunities and increased scholarships for Jan Term, experiences students describe as life-changing.

In overall impact, Saint Mary’s averaged higher than other four-year Catholic and private institutions in the Higher Education Research Institute’s 2013 CIRP College Senior Survey, measuring such factors as improved skills in critical thinking, problem solving, leadership and preparation for life after college.

Keenly aware that graduates need jobs, Saint Mary’s has increased internships by 24 percent and facilitated hundreds of job interviews. More than half of surveyed graduate students received promotions or raises after completing a graduate degree; 94 percent said it prepared them for work in their field; and 93 percent said their degree was worth the cost.

But, as the Gallup/Purdue study notes, a successful college education does more than deliver jobs; it invests in things that last. Saint Mary’s does this particularly well, with professors who care about their students, opportunities for students to apply what they learn, and a community that helps them pursue their dreams.

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