The National Alumni Career Mobility survey of 2011 and 2016 graduates was conducted in fall 2021. Results were released recently.
Since taking the survey, Jones, already has advanced his career — his fourth upwardly mobile move since earning a bachelor’s degree in 2016 in family and consumer sciences education.
In February, he was named director of alumni engagement at Seattle University in Seattle, moving into his first management position a little more than five years after graduating.
“What I really liked about Stout was the polytechnic emphasis and the way the curriculum was laid out, the courses I took. I received a breadth of experience. I knew there would be a lot of transferable skills and that I’d be well-equipped to work in any field,” Jones said. “Stout was such a transformational place for me.”
After graduating, Jones chose to enter graduate school, a benefit of the McNair Scholars Program in which he took part at UW-Stout. The program supports traditionally underserved student populations, including services to help students with graduate school preparation.
“Overall I felt prepared, and the skills I gained at Stout did prepare me for the rigor I was going to experience,” he added.
In 2018, Jones earned a master’s in education in student development administration from Seattle University. Then, he spent two years as a K-12 mentor in a national nonprofit organization, Summer Search, in the Seattle area. He returned to Seattle University as assistant director of student involvement for events and traditions.
Now, as alumni engagement director, he has a staff of three and oversees direct contact with the university’s more than 86,000 alumni. “It has been fun. It’s challenging work, but I think a lot of my work is relationship building,” he said.
For the survey question about career mobility, UW-Stout ranked higher in 12 of 13 questions than all public institutions and all colleges and universities involved.
The survey results provide another level of insight into graduates’ careers beyond UW-Stout’s annual First Destination Report. The most recent report found that 98.4% of graduates advanced their career within six months of earning their diploma, the vast majority with full-time jobs.
“The NACM survey provided key insights into the value and impact of our polytechnic programs straight from our alumni. At five and 10 years out, our alumni responded overwhelmingly that their experience at UW-Stout set them up for future success,” said Career Services Director Bryan Barts.
UW-Stout also participated in the 2020 survey of 2010 and 2015 graduates and was one of only two universities ranked exemplary in educational satisfaction.
Meridith Wentz, assistant chancellor and director of PARQ, was pleased to see that UW-Stout’s rating exceeded the benchmark comparisons on many of the metrics.
“UW-Stout’s ratings on career mobility questions exceeded the comparison group on 92% of the questions, which speaks to UW-Stout’s core competency of career-focused education,” Wentz said.
Appreciative of education, support
Jones is from Austin, Texas, but he went to high school in Wisconsin, in Waukesha where his mother lived at the time. After high school, he spent a year at Austin Community College when a plan to attend a hospitality school in Denver, Colo., fell through.