As the DSC Innovation (Every Graduate Ready) team, Yannick Thoraval and I recently spent time with a number of DSC programs learning about their connection with graduates and former students, and developing activities to enhance these relationships.
Programs greatly value their graduates. They are keen to support these students in their transition to employment but also see strong benefits flowing back to programs. The insights and experiences of graduates and other former students provide powerful examples and supports to current students. They also contribute to program awareness of emerging pathways and opportunities in their industry or discipline.
Many programs were keen to do more to reach out to recent graduates, but were hampered by the many competing demands for staff time, and the difficulty reaching former students. Although there was an opportunity to fund some activities tied to the recent Graduate Outcomes Survey [GOS], this was a tight timeline, and not always manageable for programs.
With this in mind, we encourage you to turn your attention now to your midyear graduates (however few), and those students due to complete at the end of the year. Although this is about much more than just the GOS, it’s worth noting that midyear graduates will receive the GOS in November, while December graduates will be surveyed in the following May.
To help you with these activities, we’ve put together some information on the attached slides. You may already be doing, or planning, some of these activities. But perhaps you’ll find information or inspiration here to help you pursue your graduate connections.
And we’re available to help. This could range from advice on a planned event, or linking you to other relevant staff, to template communications and practical support to create an outreach video.
Finally, if you have other ideas for graduate connection, or are keen to share – or hear about – program initiatives, do let us know.