Data about graduates from the SJU Biology master's programs. These numbers are based on students from 2008-2014, collected for a grant application. Of the 65 total students entering the program during those six years, at the time the data were collected, 60% had completed their degrees, 18% were still enrolled and 20% had been in the program over two years but not yet completed a degree. (These were almost all students in the MA program and some of them are attending part time while working.) The two-year completion rate is about 75%. This is considerably higher than the two-year graduation rate reported for STEM master’s programs as a whole, which was 41% for the years reported by the Council of Graduate Schools.
Of those students who completed their programs at SJU, 44% were or have pursued additional education, with the majority in PhD programs and the rest in a range of other graduate programs. About a quarter of those who completed the master’s program (24%) are in research or industry positions related to science and 12% are employed in a science education position. As of this writing, 7% were not employed, 5% were employed in non-science related jobs and for 7% we did not have information. Thus, of the graduates for the past five years at least 80% are either continuing their education in STEM fields or working in STEM jobs. Students from these cohorts have entered prestigious doctoral programs with assistantships at institutions all over the country, including University of Kansas, Dartmouth College, University of Texas, University of California (Berkeley), and Michigan Technical University. Employers of our master’s graduates include state and federal governments (USDA, the US Geological Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service, New Jersey Fish and Wildlife) and a range of for-profit companies (Morphotech, Advandx, Oncobiologics). While a few decided to pursue careers in other professions (e.g. clinical medical fields, law) these are a minority and we still consider them success stories; they enter these fields with strong science and research skills.
Beyond the numbers
For MS candidates whw were or are involved in science education outreach, please check them out on our GeoKids LINKS website.
See below for information about other graduates
Carrie Blakeslee: “The program at Saint Joseph’s appealed to me because it offered opportunities to advance in both research and education as a student and teaching assistant. During the program, there was a balance of coursework and research. I advanced academically and developed as a scientist. I gained valuable hands-on research experience and improved my scientific writing; skills instrumental in the scientific community. I also served as a teaching assistant for undergraduate laboratory courses. I was able to help set-up labs, assist students in their work, and switch from my typical student role to the role of a teacher. In addition, I found the faculty helpful and friendly. Rotating in different laboratories, allowed me to find which faculty members research interests best matched my own, ultimately leading to my thesis project. The hands-on research experience and knowledge I gained throughout the graduate program prepared and helped me excel in my chosen field.”