GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Grand Valley State University survey shows job outlook continues to be positive for students graduating and heading into the workforce.
GVSU Career Center Assistant Director Megan Riksen said the destination rate at the college is 95 percent. It means 95 percent of GVSU students either land a part-time or full-time job, continue education or join the military after graduation.
Riksen said the most recent GVSU job outlook survey shows 83 percent of those students are either living or working in the West Michigan area.
“A lot of the times they are from the state of Michigan, and they want to stay here,” said Riksen. “You pair that with our economy is doing great, West Michigan is a great place to live and work. There is a lot of really great things happening here for young professionals.”
Riksen believes there is more momentum every year coming from employers and GVSU students. The university holds multiple career fairs and events throughout the year. According to Riksen, these events attract over 200 employers and more than 1,500 students.
“I think our students are getting the message that they need to be able to articulate their skill sets, they need to have internships and experiences that are going to help them find employment,” said Riksen. “Often it’s not a student’s major that is key if they are going to land a position, if they have the skills necessary to do the job that’s often what our employers are looking for.”
The university uses a system called Handshake to help connect students and employers. Handshake shows a list of job opportunities and internships available. Employers can also interact with students through the program.
The positive trend is seen not only locally, but also nationally. The National Association of Colleges and Employers shows employers are hiring at a 16 percent higher rate for the class of 2019 compared to the class of 2018.