Friday, Feb. 11, 2022
Dedicated students, distinguished colleagues and dear friends,
“Critical contributions to critical challenges!”
How do you measure the effectiveness of what you do? How do you know that your work is valued and that you are contributing to the greater good? University rankings, name recognition, taglines, and other marketing and branding efforts try to convey the essence of an institution’s value to its students and society. But in the end, what matters is the collective sum of one’s long-term contributions to “society” and the ability to provide critical contributions to critical challenges – the “4 C’s of success.” In short, the ability to add value and the wisdom to mitigate harm.
Here at S&T, for a century and a half, we have enhanced the potential of our most important constituent group, our students, and as a result, we have created unparalleled opportunities for generations of our students that otherwise would not have been possible. I have, on occasion, highlighted the achievements of many of our remarkable alumni and have written about how Missouri S&T has improved the socio-economic status of generations of students. No wonder the return on investment (ROI) of our university is at the top of many national charts. The U.S. Department of Education’s newly updated College Scorecard offers further proof that an S&T degree provides ample opportunity for upward mobility, with the median earnings of S&T graduates, at $80,289, nearly double the average of $47,946 for all four-year colleges and universities in the nation.
The value of an S&T degree extends beyond the great starting salaries and outstanding careers that await our students when they graduate. As I wrote a few weeks ago, our culture of value creation has given our graduates the opportunity to not just earn a good living, but to have a good life! The lifelong dividends include high salaries and earning potential, interest from employers, great job placement, and strong professional alumni networks.
Alumni from decades past and more recent years have shared with me how their S&T education opened many professional doors because of the quality of that education and the university’s stellar reputation. As a 1962 alum explained, “If you graduated from Rolla, people knew you were well-qualified.”
This year and for this generation of our students, the culture of enhancing potential and creating opportunities continues. Next week, over 600 recruiters from nearly 300 employers will take part in our annual Spring Career Fair, where they will meet with our talented and highly qualified students. This is a record number of employers for our spring event, and it follows on the heels of our record-setting Fall Career Fair last September, when 800-plus recruiters from 335 different employers sought out our students for full-time positions, internships and co-op opportunities. Many of these companies have come to campus for decades. It is clear to these global companies that our graduates are in high demand, and that an S&T degree opens doors to outstanding careers and lifelong success.
To our students, I say, national and multinational employers are eager to connect with you! Dr. Will Zwikelmaier, director of our career opportunities and employer relations department, tells me that over 15,000 jobs are currently posted on Handshake, a fully curated platform where employers post jobs. So I encourage you to log on to Handshake and check out the many full-time, co-op and internship positions available to you! You will be amazed at the richness of these opportunities. You are in high demand!
To our faculty and staff, I say, THANK YOU! Thank you for providing the support, exceptional instruction and mentorship that prepares our students to be successful from day one of their first job after college. Thank you for enhancing their potential and for creating opportunities for them. Your diligence and efforts prepare our S&T students for lifelong success in whatever fields they pursue.
To our employers, I say, THANK YOU for continuing to place your trust in S&T as a source for the talent your organization needs to achieve its current and future goals. We commit to continue engaging our corporate partners as our trusted guides and advisors who make sure we provide the education our students need to be high performers in your organizations. After all, as a group you have reported 100% satisfaction with new hires for six years running. Your support and guidance will ensure that we will keep that record going, and that our graduates will provide critical contributions to your critical challenges.
Check out the latest news from S&T:
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