Dean Lenker III – Staff Writer
CLARION, Pa.- Clarion University’s series of social media posts using the hashtag #clarionproud continues every Wednesday. Since March 1, the university’s official Facebook and Twitter accounts have shared three bullet-point statements. These aim to “make sure people around the state realize a lot of great things are happening here in Clarion,” according to Vice President of University Advancement James Geiger.
These bullet points include information gathered from surveys, data provided by faculty and information obtained in reports that include other PASSHE system schools. Over the past few weeks, The Clarion Call has been reviewing these statistics. The first week’s post was as follows:
* Speech-language pathology master’s level graduates have a 100 percent program completion and a 98 percent employment rate.
* Business graduates have a 96 percent employment rate; computer information science graduates have a 100 percent employment rate.
* Clarion has the lowest debt of any Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education university.
The speech pathology statistic shows perfect program completion and an extremely high employment rate for students who graduated during the 2015-2016 school year. This information came from data provided by the Clarion University speech pathology program chair Dr. Jarecki-Liu.
As part of the program’s accreditation, department must maintain three-year data on post-graduation employment, admitted students who complete the program, national exam test results and other relevant information. All information is available on the Department of Communications Science & Disorders website.
According to Jarecki-Liu, the employment numbers indicate students employed in their major and currently working as a speech pathologist. Omitted in the #clarionproud posts is the statistic showing the number of students passing the National Exam in Speech Pathology, a mandatory exam for all students completing the program. In 2015-16, this number was at 89 percent.
The second statistic from week one (which indicates the employment rate for business and computer information science graduates) came by way of a survey administered by the university’s Center for Career and Professional Development to spring and summer 2015 graduates.
This data reflected information gathered from students within nine months of graduation. However, of the 266 business program graduates, only 165 (or roughly 60 percent) of these students participated in the survey. One-hundred and fifty-eight of these students indicated that they were employed, which led to the 96 percent employment rate indicated in the #clarionproud post.
Survey results for computer information science students pointed to similar student completion rates with eight of the 14 program graduates (57 percent) being counted in the survey data. All eight students that replied indicated that they were employed, leading to the 100 percent employment figure.
In each of these statistics, the numbers looked very positive in terms of the employment rate upon graduation in these two majors, but it only shows slightly over more than half the students in the respective programs who graduated.
It is possible that a majority of the students who did not complete the survey were unemployed, or it could be possible that they are all employed; nonetheless, it is an unknown at this time.
For the third statistic released on the first week of the #clarionproud social media movement, we have not yet obtained the source data by the pressing of this week’s paper. This will be an important statistic to review, as it is inferring that Clarion University itself has the lowest debt out of all 14 PASSHE schools.
We will be sure to update this statistic as soon as possible on our online version of this article. Additionally, we will include the rest of the #clarionproud posts the university has shared, which are also being reviewed by our staff.
* Within the PASSHE system, Clarion has the highest endowment per full-time student.
* Pennsylvania has 399 schools of higher education. (Just universities or colleges? High Schools?) Clarion’s enrollment places it in the top 10 percent.
* This marks the eighth year in a row that Clarion has been designated “military friendly.”
* Clarion earned national recognition for the 289,818 volunteer hours worked by 3,022 students in 2014-2015.
* Alumna Kristin Day became the first NCAA Woman of the Year from any Pennsylvania University.
A team of Clarion business undergraduates took first place nationally in the 2016 SAM Student Case Competition.
* Clarion University was selected as one of three PASSHE schools to launch a new internship program focusing on student entrepreneurs.
* Clarion’s direct economic impact on Pennsylvania totaled $160.9 million.
* Clarion’s excellence can’t be denied; more than a dozen rankings place this institution among the best universities in the region and the state.