KSU Grads Report Employment, Continuing Education Success

Even a pandemic can’t stop a Wildcat from excelling in the job market.

The latest post-graduation report from Kansas State University for graduates in the 2019-2020 school year finds 95% are employed or furthering their education. Although down from the 97% reported for the 2018-2019 school year, Kerri Keller, director of the K-State Career Center, says the percentage is impressive considering the economic havoc caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly for those graduating in 2020.

“It’s been a time like no other for new college graduates,” Keller said. “I am proud of the persistence and resilience of K-State graduates. I am also grateful for the many alumni who advocate recruiting K-State talent for their companies and organizations. It makes a world of difference for the next generations making their way from college to career.”

The report, based on surveys conducted six months following a student’s graduation from K-State, is good news for the state in retaining new college graduates, with 52% of K-State graduates accepting jobs in Kansas. When states surrounding Kansas — Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma — are added, that amount jumps to 69%. Of the remainder of employed graduates, 29% were employed elsewhere in the U.S. and 2% employed internationally.

Starting salaries for the new graduates held steady, with the median salary at $50,000 — the same as the previous year.

The response rate to the surveys was 81%.

Leading employers of new K-State graduates include Cerner Corp., Kiewit, Textron, Geary County USD 475 and Manhattan-Ogden USD 383. More than 1,360 different organizations hired at least one K-State bachelor’s graduate from the class of 2019-2020.

Of those graduates reporting placement, nearly a quarter of them were furthering their education through almost 190 different graduate or professional programs that range from accounting to veterinary medicine.

The K-State Career Center offers recruiting events that connect students with more than 800 employers. The Career Center provides support to current students and is available to new graduates throughout the calendar year as they pursue their next steps. Services are available to students in person at the Berney Family Welcome Center as well as online through the Career Center website and a variety of virtual resources.