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University of Wisconsin Oshkosh graduates continue to land jobs or other opportunities above the national average, a new survey shows.

Of the more than 1,500 respondents in the annual First Destination Outcomes survey, 88.95% of new alumni reported an outcome—meaning they are either employed, involved in military or volunteer service, continuing education or not seeking employment. That’s up from 88.8% reported from the previous year and well above the U.S. average of 84.1%.

The survey also shows 76.8% of respondents’ first destination is in the workforce, whether it be a full-time or part-time role, entrepreneurship, a postgraduate fellowship, freelance work or another paid position. That’s significantly higher than the national average of 60.2%.

The First Destination Outcomes survey targets recent UW Oshkosh graduates to learn about their career outcomes. Released this week, the annual study gives insight to the post-graduate endeavors of students who graduated with bachelor’s degrees during the 2021-22 academic year.

▶︎ View the full results of the First Destination Outcomes survey

For Wisconsin, gaining and retaining

The findings also show UWO continues to power up the local and statewide communities. Nearly 85% of Titan graduates are working, studying, serving in the military or volunteering in Wisconsin. That includes more than 44% of graduates who came to Oshkosh from outside the state.

Chancellor Andrew Leavitt

“One of the powerful distinctions of UW Oshkosh and a UW Oshkosh education is the incredible regional economy surrounding the University’s three campuses,” said Chancellor Andrew Leavitt. “This latest First Destination report follows those before it in documenting how our newest alumni continue locking in outstanding career opportunities in Wisconsin, if not the Fox Valley region, before they even graduate.”

More than 89% of graduates from Wisconsin remain in Wisconsin—most often living in places like Oshkosh, Green Bay, the Fox Cities, Milwaukee and Madison. The top industries UWO prepares workers for are healthcare (27.2%), education (16.9%), manufacturing (13%), service and management (12.3%) and art, multimedia and technology (5.6%).

“A big factor in these quick starts is students’ meaningful internships, work experiences or professional placements with amazing industry, nonprofit and educational partners close to UWO,” Leavitt said. “This new report confirms that at UWO quality education immediately leads to quality of life.”

First Destination Outcomes survey key figures

A glimpse of some of the noteworthy findings from the latest First Destination Outcomes survey:

  • 88.95%: Graduates reporting an outcome—nearly 5 percentage points higher than the national average.
  • 81.96%: Graduates who secured their position before graduation.
  • 84.7%: Graduates with an outcome who remain in Wisconsin.
  • 76.8%: Graduates who are working—compared to the national average of 60.2%.
  • $54,395: Average annual starting salary for graduates—up more than $5,000 over the year before.
  • 93.6%: College of Nursing graduates who secured an outcome.
  • 92.8%: College of Business graduates who secured an outcome.

About the survey

The survey is administered by the UWO Career and Professional Development office. Information is first collected from undergraduate students and then updates are given three, six and nine months after graduation. Information also is collected from University community members, phone calls and online research. Data is collected related to the number of employed new alumni, their employers, their positions and their salaries. It also includes the number of students continuing their education, where they are attending and what they are studying.

When a respondent has multiple outcomes—such as both full-time work and continuing education—only what is designated as the primary outcome is reported.

The report on the 2021-22 academic year includes those earning bachelor’s degrees in fall 2021 and spring and summer 2022. The response rate among the 1,581 students was 94.5%.

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