With commencement set for Sunday, May 13, Alfred State College (ASC) seniors are preparing for their next steps. For a majority of ASC graduates, it’s a seamless transition from school life to the working world.
The employment and continuing education rate at Alfred State has remained a rock-solid 99 percent for the past eight years. A survey of recent graduates shows 65 percent are employed, while 34 percent are pursing advanced degrees. This strong link from education to employment is not only good news for students, but also for employers looking to fill positions in high-demand fields.
According to a recent report by the Washington State Auditor, many students think that choosing any major with a four-year bachelor’s degree is a clear path to employment. The reality is that certain industries are more eager to hire. Good jobs in the skilled trades are available with a two-year associate degree. Jobs requiring specific technical skills are also going unfilled while waiting for applicants with the right bachelor’s degree.
The already high demand for workers in the construction trades, for example, will rise considerably over the next several years, as revealed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Across the US, millions of jobs remain open because applicants do not have the right technical or trade skills.
The Alfred State Class of 2018, however, is prepared to fill these positions. Seth Gilligan, of Canandaigua, a soon-to-be graduate of the electrical construction and maintenance electrician program, had no trouble finding a job.
“It’s pretty easy to get a job in the electrical field. They’re everywhere,” explained Gilligan, who was contacted directly by his future employer through Indeed.com. “Alfred State is known for its vocational degrees, so companies are very aware of the potential of students and their knowledge.”
Kacie Matuszak, of Henrietta, is also starting work in the construction industry. Before even earning her bachelor’s degree in architecture, she has a position waiting for her at Pathfinder Engineers & Architects, based in Rochester.
“I've heard from some architecture firms that they really like the education we receive here at Alfred State because of how technical it is,” said Matuszak. "It doesn't feel real yet, having been here for four years, that I'm actually done and will be starting a real job." Every year ASC has a number of programs in which there are more employers ready to hire than there are available graduates. For more information, go to www.AlfredState.edu/more-jobs.
Alfred State’s 2018 commencement ceremonies will take place on Sunday, May 13 at noon in Pioneer Stadium.