According to a recent survey published by Newsweek, Dunwoody College of Technology, Minneapolis, is ranked 20th in the nation in terms of graduates who earn the highest amount of money with their community college degrees.
One reason is that the college has made significant efforts over the years to partner with local industries that could potentially hire their students.
“We are proud of the great industry relationships we have developed over the years, which have benefited our students and alumni,” said Bridget Reynolds, dean of construction sciences and building technology at the college. “Not only have those relationships opened doors for our graduates, but they have allowed us to ensure the skills and technologies we are teaching are state-of-the-industry and in high demand.”
One area of study in the college is its electrical program. For the past several years, according to Reynolds, 99%–100% of its electrical program graduates have been placed in the field.
“In fact, the college has averaged over 20 job inquiries per graduate,” she said. “Within our electrical construction and maintenance degree, 85%–90% of students enter the construction field as electrical apprentices, and the remainder join the maintenance industry.”
In addition, the electrical construction and maintenance degree students enter the industry working directly with electrical contractors and engineering firms as electrical estimators, designers or project managers.
However, as a result of the pandemic, the construction industry has taken a huge hit, meaning that it is hiring fewer new employees than it once did, and this includes graduates from technical community colleges.
As a result, the college is in the process of taking steps to improve the chances of its graduates getting work in their chosen fields.
One of these initiatives is the PIVOT Design & Construction Conference 2021, scheduled for Feb. 2.
“We planned the conference as a way to bring together industry leaders, educators and future professionals,” Reynolds said. “The attendees will benefit from the all-day virtual event by exploring current trends and the future of the construction industry.”
As an additional way to be proactive, the college has arranged for the morning presentation portion of the event to be followed by an afternoon career fair and expo, featuring participation from 75 employers.
“Our biggest hope is that the conference will help our students find jobs and connect companies with stand-out future employees,” she said. “We also hope to showcase the various segments of the electrical industry with help from our industry partners, in order to educate our students about different career paths.”