There’s one more thing to mention about who’s getting which jobs, and it’s important. For both the Mayo Clinic and the Skadden Arps lists, and also for the Washington Post list in the More Resources section, I looked in significantly more detail at who works in each of these places in order to determine whether there’s been a change over the years in how easy or difficult it is to get a job. My guess was that–as we moved into the 21st century and more very capable and ambitious students were attending schools not among the most selective–the percentage of students who attended less selective schools would rise. At the above-mentioned three places and one other top law firm I looked at, this assumption was confirmed.
At the Mayo Clinic, the percentage of students attending schools not in the MC25 was 70% for those who graduated between 1980 and 1999. For those who graduated in 2000 and after, that percentage rose to 74%.
At Skadden Arps, the same percentage rose from 60% to 64%.
At the Washington Post, it went from 55% in the 1980-1999 bracket to 65% in the new century.
At the other top law firm, the percentage rose even more dramatically from 51% to 64%.
All of this makes sense. Employers have strong motivation to find the best people to hire regardless of their alma mater, and they will continue to do so because they want to maintain the excellence their clients have come to expect. If more top candidates are attending less selective colleges, the percentage of hires from these schools will rise commensurately. Those who are capable of being successful at an MC25 school, but who aren’t accepted due to limited seat availability, will still have excellent career options open to them.
Okay, that’s enough about these lists for now. Hopefully they’ve helped you to see, or perhaps confirmed for you, that the college your children attend will not affect their lives as much as many folks believe. If you’re interested in seeing lists for other professions, or just want an easier way to refer to the lists you just saw, check out the Lists tab under More Resources in the Main Menu; be sure to click on the word ‘Lists’ first for some helpful notes.
Oh, and if you think I may have been cherry-picking, I encourage you to look for yourself. Not many employers have bios of all of their employees that include their alma maters, but most at least include bios of their leadership. You’ll find that a few places are heavy on graduates of the most selective schools, but not many. These will primarily be confined to those employers founded and led by someone who attended one of those colleges, such as Facebook or Amazon, or to those employers who are one of those colleges. If your kid’s dream is to be president of an Ivy League university, then it behooves them to do all they can to attend one, for graduate school if not undergrad.
Let’s move on to looking at what makes for a better approach to college admissions. Please view the Disclaimers section of the presentation before clicking on What to Do.