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Second Gallup - Indiana Survey Shows Hoosier Graduates Believe College Is Worth It
Updated August 9, 2018 3:03 PM | Filed under: Education
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(INDIANAPOLIS) - More than 85 percent of graduates from 12 Indiana public and private colleges say they were satisfied or extremely satisfied with the education they received, according to the results of the second Gallup-Indiana Graduate Satisfaction Survey released today by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education.

With funding support from Strada Education Network, Gallup and the Commission, the survey reached out to more than 21,000 college graduates from the Indiana colleges that volunteered to participate in the second year of this statewide look at alumni satisfaction.

"For these 12 campuses and the Commission, the results from the second Gallup-Indiana Survey provide insights we can use to improve the postsecondary experience for all Hoosier students," said Indiana Commissioner for Higher Education Teresa Lubbers. "I commend the colleges that stepped up to be survey participants and will continue to encourage Indiana colleges to participate in this biennial survey."

The following 12 colleges participated in this second survey administration: Ball State University, Butler University, Calumet College of St. Joseph, Grace College, Indiana University Southeast, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, Ivy Tech Community College, Marian University, Purdue University Northwest, Taylor University, Vincennes University and WGU Indiana. See results for all participating colleges online here.

Statewide Results: Positive Findings

  • Worth the Investment/Debt: Nearly 80 percent of alumni surveyed agree or strongly agree that their higher education was worth the cost. For those with student loans, 73 percent agree college was worth it.
  • Greater Well-Being: Indiana's college graduates continue to thrive at higher rates than graduates surveyed nationally at all five elements measured: sense of purpose, social well-being, financial well-being, community well-being and physical well-being.
  • Educational Decisions: Indiana's college graduates when asked "if they could do it all over again," 97 percent indicated they would still have obtained a bachelor's degree, 72 percent would still study the same major in their bachelor's degree program, and 87 percent would still attend the same institution to obtain their degree.

Statewide Results: Opportunities for Improvement

  • Career Services: Among graduates who graduated after 2010, only 58 percent visited their college's career services office at least once.
  • Well Prepared for Life: Just 36 percent of surveyed graduates strongly agree they were well prepared for life outside of college.
  • Support Experience: Only 30 percent of surveyed graduates strongly agree they had a mentor who encouraged them to pursue their goals and dreams.
It is important to note that school results differ by the age and/or graduation year of respondents. For example, older alumni tend to be more likely to report high well-being and work engagement, and younger alumni tend to be more likely to have had the six specific supports and opportunities surveyed, such as an internship.

The Gallup-Indiana Survey was inspired by the Gallup-Purdue Index. This partnership between Gallup and Purdue University surveyed thousands of college graduates to measure the relationship between a college degree and long-term graduate well-being and workplace engagement.

The second Gallup-Indiana survey was conducted in partnership with Strada Education Network, which supplied a $500,000 grant to offer 50 percent discounts for all participating public institutions. Additionally, the Commission offered a 10 percent discount for participating public colleges and Gallup offered a 10 percent discount for all participating colleges.

"This kind of information about the college experiences and outcomes of Indiana graduates is invaluable for prospective students and their families who are planning for college, as well as for policymakers and educators who are determining higher education policy and programming," said Carol D'Amico, Executive Vice President, National Engagement and Mission Advancement at Strada Education Network. "Strada is delighted to support these more robust measures of college value to promote student success in college and career."

These 2018 Gallup-Indiana Survey results play an important part in the second iteration of the Indiana's College Value Index. First launched in 2016, the index provided a first-in-the-nation, comprehensive measure of higher education value that brings together the Commission's existing data on college readiness, college completion, student debt, employment, average earnings and this qualitative data on graduate satisfaction.

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