CSU, Chico News

CSU, Chico Alumni Earnings Rate High in National Study

Date: 09-11-2008

Joe Wills
Public Affairs

California State University, Chico has been rated highly by Forbes Magazine in a ranking of earnings by alumni of U.S. colleges and universities.

Forbes reported on a study by PayScale.com, which looked at the earnings of college graduates with 10–20 years of work experience. CSU, Chico ranks 24th in the nation among all public universities for the median salaries of its graduates.

The mid-career median salary of CSU, Chico’s alumni was $88,100. The starting salary for those CSU, Chico alumni was $47,400.

The top school overall in the country was Dartmouth College, with an alumni mid-career median salary of $131,000. The top state university on the list was UC Berkeley, with a median salary of $112,000.

Ranked just above CSU, Chico among public universities at 23rd was University of Massachusetts; one notch below CSU, Chico was the University of Florida. Other well-known public institutions ranked lower than CSU, Chico were University of Wisconsin, University of Arizona, Penn State, University of Washington, Indiana University, Ohio State and University of Minnesota.

“This is an important affirmation of the quality of our graduates and the people and programs of Chico State which have prepared them for success,” said CSU, Chico President Paul Zingg. “As this survey attests, our students are doing well both upon starting their careers and continuing in them. Our higher ranking than many flagship state universities and higher cost institutions underscores what a great value a Chico State education is.”

“What differentiates Chico graduates is that they arrive on the job ready to contribute, but continue to learn beginning their first day,” said Ben Guthrie, a long-time business and finance manager and recruiter for Chevron who is also a CSU, Chico alumnus. “Through their Chico experience, they develop a keen ability to work collaboratively and help others. They also bring a very solid set of technical skills from their academic preparation. These attributes make them successful and enable them to move into leadership roles during their careers.”

The other California public universities besides UC Berkeley ranked above CSU, Chico were Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, UCLA, UC San Diego, UC Davis, UC Irvine, San Jose State and UC Santa Barbara.

PayScale.com, headquartered in Seattle, reportedly has the largest database of salary information in the world. Salary figures were compiled by consulting a database of 13 million different compensation profiles.

In the ranking story, “Top Colleges For Getting Rich, “ Forbes associate editor Kurt Badenhausen wrote, “While many rankings look at what newly minted college graduates are making, we ranked the schools based on the pay of alumni with 10 to 20 years of work experience. After all, it is not how you start but how you finish.”

All U.S. colleges and universities with more than 1,000 students were included in the study. Alumni who went on to earn a graduate degree were excluded, as were individuals who worked less than full-time.

“The fact that Chico State has achieved 24th in the Forbes salary rankings is not surprising to me,” said Jamie Starmer, director of the Chico State Career Center. “For over 15 years I have had the pleasure of working with our graduates and alumni who have been hired by some of the most impressive employers in the state and nation. This is a testament to the strong real-world skills the students are exposed to through a very applied, hands-on curriculum that in turn develops a highly success-oriented graduate. We hear first-hand how well prepared our graduates are and how much employers value their potential well beyond the entry level position. It is especially gratifying to see our grads come by as senior managers to hire the next generation of shining stars.”

The Forbes story is on the Web at http://www.forbes.com/2008/07/30/college-salary-graduates-lead-cz_kb_0730topcolleges.html and the ranking of schools at http://www.payscale.com/best-colleges/top-state-universities.asp.