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Class of 2013 Can Expect a Rise in Hiring of College Graduates

With Commencement just weeks away, Colby-Sawyer College's senior class members were continuing their hard work on Capstone projects, preparing for final exams, working at internship sites, and filling out applications for graduate school and job opportunities.

For many students, the goal is to find a job and be prepared to begin working immediately after graduation. Some students are optimistic about finding work, even with knowledge of how competitive the market has been over the past decade.

“I feel pretty confident. I think most business majors are confident,” says Business Administration major Mike Cocce '13. “But maybe we're just hopeful because of all the work we've been doing for Strategic Management.”

This optimism may be warranted, as preliminary results of a recent job outlook survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers showed that employers expect to hire 13 percent more college graduates from the Class of 2013 than from the Class of 2012.

Colby-Sawyer's Harrington Center for Career and Academic Advising recently released the results from their own alumni job survey. The survey data displays information on whether students found jobs related to their major, salaries, if they had previously worked for the employer, and career potential.

“We are hearing good things about the job and graduate school picture from our graduating seniors,” says Director of Career and Academic Advising Kathy Taylor. “Several students have been offered and are considering positions, while we've heard of several students who have been accepted to graduate programs.”

Over the previous five years, an average of 94 percent of student respondents and 98 percent of respondents from the Class of 2012 reported being employed or enrolled in graduate school. Sixty-seven percent of respondents from the Class of 2011 and 49 percent from the Class of 2012 reported working at a job directly related to their major. For graduates in majors such as Nursing, being able to find a job in the medical field immediately after college is the ideal situation.

“Luckily, Colby-Sawyer shares a good relationship with Dartmouth-Hitchcock (Medical Center),” explains Nursing major Erica Pentony '13. “But for the new graduates going elsewhere it's difficult to find a job.”

Colby-Sawyer's internship program remains a good way for students to get their foot in the door within their specific fields of interest. At least 30 percent of student respondents to previous alumni job surveys, and 34 percent from the Class of 2012, reported being hired by the company where they had gained experience through their internships.

For new graduates who are able to find jobs, they will find an increase in the average starting salary. According to the NACE, 2012 saw a 3.4 percent increase in the average starting salary for college graduates, now totaling $44,455.

The business field increased 4.2 percent in average salary from 2011, jumping to $53,900, and health science professionals saw a rise of 5.4 percent, up to $49,196.

Once a new graduate finds a job, the priority becomes establishing a sense of security in their position and finding opportunities to advance their career.

From the previous five years of survey information, 70 percent or more of Colby-Sawyer alumni respondents reported definite or possible career potential in their current positions.

As the job market continues its recovery, seniors carry on with preparations for graduation, and their entrance into the career world.

“I feel confident as a Public Health major,” says Kelly Sullivan '13. “If you're persistent enough, employers notice. I have a job lined up after only a month of searching.”

-Thomas Buckley '13

Thomas Buckley is a Creative Writing major who completed an internship in College Communications in spring 2013.


Colby-Sawyer College is a comprehensive college that integrates the liberal arts and sciences with professional preparation. Founded in 1837, Colby-Sawyer is located in the scenic Lake Sunapee Region of central New Hampshire.

Colby-Sawyer College, 541 Main Street, New London, N.H. 03257 (603) 526-3000