What College Experiences Predict Career Happiness and Success? - Student Research Foundation

What College Experiences Predict Career Happiness and Success?

Findings from the 2017 Gallup-Purdue Index study

Every year Gallup updates its Gallup-Purdue Index, a study of 70,000 college graduates. If you follow how colleges are preparing students to succeed in their professional lives after graduation, it is well worth tracking this annual study and its findings.

In a recent post on the Gallup Blog, “Career-Relevant Education Linked to Student Well-Being,” Gallup researchers Brandon Busteed and Zac Auter highlight what they call the “Big Six College Experiences” – the experiences college graduates say contributed the most to their post-college career success.

Let’s take a closer look.

The “Big Six” for Career Happiness and Success

  1. “I had at least one professor who made me excited about learning.”
  2. “My professor(s) cared about me as a person.”
  3. “I had a mentor who encouraged me to pursue my goals and dreams.”
  4. “I worked on a project that took a semester or more to complete.”
  5. “I had an internship or job that allowed me to apply what I was learning in the classroom.”
  6. “I was extremely active in extracurricular activities and organizations where I attended college.”

Source: “Career-Relevant Education Linked to Student Well-Being” by Brandon Busteed and Zac Auter, The Gallup Blog.

We find that at least two of those responses – numbers 4 and 6 – offer new insights about college experiences that lead to successful careers. The fact that a project that takes a semester or more to complete leads to career success is a new finding in our experience. And so is the finding that extracurricular activities lead to career happiness. But that makes sense, doesn’t it? There is more to college, after all, than what happens in the classroom.

 


We Invite You to  Explore All Your College Options. . .

Participate in the National Career & College Pathway Study to gain new insights about making educational decisions that align with your interests, passions, and aptitudes. Who knows maybe you will find the pathway to set yourself up for career happiness and success.

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