And the Results are In…..

Barbara Hewitt

The Career Services staff has been spending lots of time lately collecting and reviewing data for our Postgraduate Career Plans and Summer Surveys. I recently completed the Career Plans Survey for the Wharton Undergraduate Class of 2011. Guess what? They did fabulous! In fact, we had the lowest percentage of graduates still seeking opportunities (as of the end of October) than I have witnessed in my 13 years at Penn. Although data from last year is not necessarily a predictor of what will happen with the Class of 2012, it is important to remember that Penn graduates traditionally do very well upon graduation. While we are not immune to the recent economic uncertainty and turmoil, it is important not to let the nightly news get you too discouraged… there are interesting and rewarding opportunities out there.

A few interesting facts about the Wharton Undergraduate Class of 2011:

• The average starting base salary was $66,412. The range was $20,000 – $120,000.
• 89.5% of respondents were employed and 5.6% planned to pursue additional education.
• The average student had 12.5 first-round interviews and received 2.2 job offers.
• Of the students who reported accepting jobs, 82.5% accepted them during the fall and 95.6% accepted before graduation. 4.4% of students reported they were still seeking opportunities (employment or graduate school) as of October 2011.

We prepare post-graduate reports for each of the undergraduate schools at Penn which can be found on our surveys page: (The CAS and SEAS reports are in progress and should be available soon.) We also prepare reports on summer experiences, particularly focused on those between junior and senior years. We are currently putting out a last call for undergraduate students to tell us what you did last summer! We will be analyzing data from Summer 2011 in the next few weeks. If you haven’t completed the survey yet please take a few minutes to do so now at: (Note you will need your PennKey and PennKey password to access the survey.) Your participation will greatly enhance the accuracy and usefulness of our survey and will be much appreciated by the Career Services staff (and your fellow students!)

Summer Hours at Career Services

Happy summer!

Well, just about anyway!  As everyone wraps up with finals and graduating students prepare to make their way down Locust Walk for the commencement procession, we wanted to remind you that Career Services is open throughout the summer!

Summer hours for both the main office and the Career Services library are Monday-Friday from 9am-5pm.  Extended library hours will resume with the start of classes in September.

Stop in or call us to make an appointment with an appropriate counselor!

If you’re a graduating senior or you’ve just complete a Masters or PhD, be sure you visit the undergraduate or graduate home pages and fill out our Career Plans Survey!  You can take a look at the results from previous surveys here – a great resource if you’re still on the job market!

Additionally, this blog will continue to post fresh content all summer long every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.  Keep us bookmarked or subscribe to our RSS feed so you never miss an entry!

We wish you the best of luck during finals and hope that you have a wonderful summer!  Just remember that we’re here if you need us!

News you can use: Summer Survey report

by Helen Cheung

During the Fall, many of you answered our pleas and completed the Summer Survey which asks undergraduates what they did last summer.  Thank you so much!  I’ve read each and every one of your responses (those from CAS students) and enjoyed living vicariously through your experiences.  In doing so, I also have learned a lot about summer opportunities.  Just as we like to base our career advice on real information, I hope that you will use this data to guide your summer job search. Those of you who have met me might know that I’m a fan of “fact checking.” Here are some facts:

1. Exploration: First, if you are ever curious about what other students in your major and class do, what opportunities are out there in a particular field, how much money on average an intern makes, or where students live over the summer, the Summer Survey Report has the answers.  One thing I learned is that nearly half of the students do more than one thing in the summer – they work full-time and intern part-time, or they take classes and volunteer, etc.   You can also search for upperclassmen to ask internship-related questions on the Penn Internship Network, the database of Penn students who have volunteered to speak with other students about their internships.

2. Industries: The industries that hired the most CAS students are: education, financial services, nonprofit, communication, and government.  So, while CAS students have no trouble finding work in business, far more students are in creative and service industries. Don’t limit yourself to the types of employers who recruit on campus or post jobs on PennLink if your interests lie elsewhere.

3. Jobs: CAS students held summer positions in more than 90 different job categories and is the most diverse of the undergraduate schools at Penn.  Your arts and sciences education gives you many career options.  Therefore, explore and research your options.  For example, students who did a legal internship worked not only in law firms, but also higher education, nonprofit, manufacturing, and government industries.  The “What Can I do With My Major” link is a good resource that lays out for each type of work, what sort of organization you would look in to find it.

4. Application timing: Last summer, 65% of CAS students found their summer jobs in March, April and May last year, with most offers coming in April.  That means *now* is a good time to apply for jobs and follow up on leads and applications.

5. Search methods: 30% of CAS students found their jobs through personal contacts and 18% through applying directly to the organization. The lesson here? Talk to people, meet new ones, take the initiative to research organizations, inquire and follow up. Too many students believe that their applications go to a “black hole” and don’t bother applying at all.  In addition to applying directly, diversify your approach, including using PACNet or LinkedIn to seek advice and leads from Penn alumni.

I hope these observations and advice will be helpful as you continue your summer job search. As always, you’ll find a great deal of helpful information on the Career Services website, and I encourage all of you to connect with one of the career counselors if you have questions about your search.  Good luck!