Arizona universities will graduate thousands of students this month and for many of them it’s time to make the big “what’s next?” decision.
A 2013 University of Arizona Career Services survey found about half of the UA grads were headed to work; 16 percent planned to continue on to graduate school and 9 percent were entering the military or traveling.
ASU Career Services sent out a similar survey and of those who responded, 87 percent said they were going straight into the work force.
UA public health major Sophia Eastwood will be among those headed to grad school after she graduates in May. She plans to stay at the UA and get a master’s degree in public health.
“I hope to become a program director or coordinator for a nonprofit health organization some day,” Eastwood said.
Nearly 60 percent of the UA College of Social and Behavioral Sciences graduates are leaving with jobs in hands, according to the college’s website. Another 42 percent plan to attend grad school.
The ASU admissions offices refused to comment on how many graduates are enrolled in their school. Their Factbook page has not been updated since the 2008-09 school year.
The UA Factbook stated that the university had 7,443 graduate students enrolled during the 2013-14 and awarded 1,663 graduate degrees for that school year.
Jordan Goldstein, a senior psychology and criminal justice student at UA, has a job lined up after she graduates this month. She plans to attend grad school later, but does not know when.
She will be working in Napa Valley, California, with children who have either been in Child Protective Services custody or who have been adopted. Some of the children are also from families where the parents are incapable of taking care of them.
These children live in a village with four houses where they attend school and are able to go to necessary appointments on an individual basis. The kids can eat, sleep and participate in activities within the village. The village gives them an opportunity to forget the real world and be normal kids for a little while.
“In the future, I want to become the chief of child probation. I found this job through my best friend’s aunt. It is through her company called Children’s Village,” Goldstein said.
Emily Tomlinson, a UA physiology senior, has decided to take a year off of school after graduation. She plans to stay in Tucson, find work as an emergency medical technician and use that year to fine-tune her medical school application, which opens in June.
“I would really love to be a pediatrician and work in a primary care office. I am still not completely sure if I want to do another specialty like oncology or cardiology, so we’ll see in medical school,” Tomlinson said.
Tomlinson, like other students in her situation, know what they want to do, but still have to figure out details and their action plan to get to where they want to be.
Leah Cresswell is a reporter at Arizona Sonora News, a service from the School of Journalism at the University of Arizona. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org