Earnings for Graduates Dashboard

Published: 
September, 2017
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Introduction

This website displays earnings of students who have received certificates or degrees from public colleges, universities, and apprenticeship programs in Washington, and who were subsequently employed in Washington.

Knowing about typical earnings of graduates of programs may assist in decision-making, but personal interest and skills are the most important factors in education and career planning.

Limitations and Disclaimers

Earnings information is provided only for completers matched with Unemployment Insurance (UI) wage records collected by the Washington State Employment Security Department. This analysis does NOT include self-employed individuals, federal employees, and those employed exclusively outside Washington. Data are not displayed for groups of fewer than 30 individuals.

Many students continue their education after completion of a program and do not reach their full earning power until completing their education.

Wage rates vary widely across the state and the mix of programs offered by a college often reflects the regional economy. Earnings variations across colleges are expected.

Many factors in addition to earnings are required to measure the true value of a degree.

Terms & Definitions

Awards

Awards are degrees, certificates, and apprenticeship completions. Colleges (including community and technical colleges) and universities award degrees. Community and technical colleges also award certificates. The Department of Labor & Industries oversees apprenticeship programs. Awards from academic years 2007-08 to 2013-14 are included in this report.

Completer and Graduate are used interchangeably to refer to those who earn awards.

The following elements are used to describe awards:

Award type:

  • Certificate requiring at least one year of full-time study
  • Apprenticeship
  • Degree: Associate’s degree, Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree, Doctor's degree - professional practice (Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, Law), Doctor's degree - research/scholarship (Ph.D.; Ed.D.)

Field of study: The colleges and universities provided U.S. Department of Education Classification of Instructional Program (CIP) codes for all completers. Apprenticeship data contained Standard Occupation Code (SOC) for the occupation associated with the apprenticeship. We used a SOC-to-CIP crosswalk to associate the apprenticeship programs with a CIP code, although these are not always a perfect match.

Cohorts

This website provide earnings data for groups of individuals who received an award between 2007-08 and 2013-14. All cohorts are defined by the field of study, type of award, and number of years after graduation. These cohorts may be further subdivided by institution OR industry of employment (but not both).

Example: Engineering, Bachelor’s Degree, 1 year after graduation. This cohort contains graduates who earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering between 2007-08 and 2013-14 and 2009 earnings for the 2007-08 graduates, 2010 earnings for the 2008-2009 graduates, and so on.

Example: Business, Associate’s Degree, 3 years after graduation. This cohort contains graduates who earned an Associate’s degree in Business between 2007-08 and 2011-12 and 2011 earnings for the 2007-08 graduates, 2012 earnings for the 2008-09 graduates, and so on. Individuals who graduated in 2012-13 or later are not included in this cohort because they do not have earnings data for the third year after graduation.

For a matrix that fully describes the relationship between Graduation Year, Earnings Year, and Years after Graduation, please see the “Years after Graduation” Section.

Earnings

The Washington State Employment Security Department provided Unemployment Insurance (UI) wage records for individuals employed in Washington.

We display earnings measures for all cohort members who are employed in Washington and who meet the minimum wage thresholds described below.

Earnings are displayed for full calendar years after program completion.

Earnings data is available through 2015. For example, 2007-08 graduates have earnings data for seven subsequent calendar years (2009-2015).

We have adjusted earnings data for inflation.

Earnings are adjusted to 4th quarter 2015 using the Chain-Weight Implicit Price Deflator (IPD) for Personal Consumption Expenditures (http://www.bea.gov/iTable/ NIPA Table 1.1.9).

We display earnings data for individuals who meet certain criteria:

  • Those who work all four quarters in a calendar year, and
  • whose annual earnings are at least $14,000 (nominal dollars).

$14,000 per year roughly corresponds to employment of 75 percent of full-time hours at Washington’s minimum wage.

Earnings are displayed as percentile values.

The median – or 50th percentile value – is the value that divides the earners into two groups – half earning more than the median and half earning less. In some cases, the 75th percentile (75% of earners make less) and 25th percentile (25% of earners make less) are shown.

There are minimum cell sizes required for display.

We display the median earnings of all cohorts that contain at least 30 individuals. If there are at least 90 individuals in a cohort, the 25th and 75th percentile earnings are also shown.

Field of Study

The colleges and universities provided U.S. Department of Education Classification of Instructional Program (CIP) codes for all completers. Apprenticeship data contained Standard Occupation Code (SOC) for the occupation associated with the apprenticeship. We used a SOC-to-CIP crosswalk to associate the apprenticeship programs with a CIP code. Fields of study with a small number of graduates each year may not be listed because the cohort does not have at least 30 individuals employed in Washington.

Industry of Employment

You are able to view earnings data grouped by Award Level, Major Field of Study, and Industry of Employment. When viewing industry-level earnings, you are not able to further disaggregate by Institution. Each earning record contains a code (the North American Industry Classification System, “NAICS”) that we use to determine the employer’s industry sector (e.g. Construction, Manufacturing, etc). More information about the NAICS system can be found here. Keep in mind that industry of employment does not always correlate to occupation. For example, an IT professional working at an aerospace company will be assigned to the “Manufacturing” sector and not the “Information” sector.

Years after Graduation

Instead of reporting earnings by calendar year, we report earnings by years after graduation. This is done primarily to maximize the number of fields of study, award levels, and institutions that we can display: “1 year after graduation” contains seven years of inflation-adjusted earnings data (2009-2015). The matrix below shows the graduation year across the columns, the earnings years along the rows, and the “Year(s) after Graduation” in the cells.

Years after graduation Graduation Year
2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Earnings Year 2009 1            
2010 2 1          
2011 3 2 1        
2012 4 3 2 1      
2013 5 4 3 2 1    
2014 6 5 4 3 2 1  
2015 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

Institution

Institution is the general term referring to a college (including community and technical colleges) or university that awards degrees and/or certificates. Apprenticeships are offered by a variety of organizations: unions, trade associations, individual companies/municipalities, etc. In this report, Institution refers to the Apprenticeship Program Name.

Table 1 lists all colleges and universities included in this analysis. Table 2 lists all apprenticeship programs included in this analysis. If a cohort does not have at least 30 graduates employed in Washington, it will not be displayed. However, the students in cohorts of less than 30 graduates are included in the statewide calculation.

Multiple Awards

Multiple Awards – Same Year

If the individual received more than one type of award in a year, we use the record corresponding to the highest level award.

Example: Mark is awarded a certificate and an associate’s degree in 2007-08. His earnings data will be associated with the associate’s degree cohort, but not with the certificate recipient cohort.

If an individual received multiple awards of the same pedigree in the same year (e.g. double major), they are represented in each field of study associated with the awards.

Example: Luis receives a bachelor’s degree in Applied Mathematics and a bachelor’s degree in Statistics in 2009‑10. Since both degrees are in the same field of study group (Mathematics and Statistics), his earnings data is counted only once in the calculation for that field of study.

Example: Sarah receives a bachelor’s degree in Meteorology (Physical Sciences) and a bachelor’s degree in TV Broadcasting (Communication) in 2010-11. Her earnings data is included in both the Physical Sciences and Communications field of study groups.

Multiple Awards – Different Years

If an individual received multiple awards between 2008-2014, their earnings are associated with the highest level award received. In the event that the award is of the same pedigree, the earnings are associated with the most recent award.

Example: Jennifer receives a bachelor’s degree in 2007-08 and a master’s degree in 2011‑12. Her earnings in 2009, 2010, and 2011, and 2012 are associated with the bachelor’s degree cohort for years 1, 2, 3 and 4 after graduation. Her earnings in 2013, 2014, and 2015 are associated with the master’s degree cohort for years 1, 2 and 3 after graduation.

Example: Hideki receives an associate’s degree in 2010-11 and a certificate in 2013-14. His earnings in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 are associated with the associate’s degree cohort for years 1, 2, 3 and 4 after graduation. His earnings in 2015 are not associated with the certificate cohort.

Example: Kayla receives a bachelor’s degree in 2007-08 and another bachelor’s degree in 2010-11. Her earnings in 2009, 2010, and 2011 are associated with the bachelor’s degree cohort for years 1, 2, and 3 after graduation. Her earnings in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 are associated with the bachelor’s degree cohort for years 1, 2, 3 and 4 after graduation.

Table 1: Colleges/Universities and Award Levels

Cert = Certificate; Assoc = Associate’s Degree; Bach = Bachelor’s Degree; Mast = Master’s Degree; Doct = Doctor’s Degree

Bachelor’s Degree column shows first year Applied Bachelor’s degrees were awarded in community and technical colleges (for institutions awarding these degrees by 2014-15)

Institution Name Location Awards Offered
Cert Assoc Bach Mast Doct
University of Washington Seattle     X X X
Washington State University Pullman     X X X
Central Washington University Ellensburg     X X  
Eastern Washington University Cheney     X X X
Western Washington University Bellingham     X X  
The Evergreen State College Olympia     X X  
Bates Technical College Tacoma X X      
Bellevue College Bellevue X X 2008-09    
Bellingham Technical College Bellingham X X      
Big Bend Community College Moses Lake X X      
Cascadia College Bothell X X      
Centralia College Centralia X X      
Clark College Vancouver X X      
Clover Park Technical College Lakewood X X      
Columbia Basin College Pasco X X 2010-11    
Edmonds Community College Lynnwood X X      
Everett Community College Everett X X      
Grays Harbor College Aberdeen X X      
Green River Community College Auburn X X      
Highline College Des Moines X X      
Lake Washington Institute of Technology Kirkland X X 2010-11    
Lower Columbia College Longview X X      
North Seattle College Seattle X X      
Olympic College Bremerton X X 2008-09    
Peninsula College Port Angeles X X 2008-09    
Pierce College-Fort Steilacoom Lakewood X X      
Pierce College-Puyallup Puyallup X X      
Renton Technical College Renton X X      
Seattle Central College Seattle X X 2010-11    
Seattle Vocational Institute Seattle X X      
Shoreline Community College Seattle X X      
Skagit Valley College Mount Vernon X X      
South Puget Sound Community College Olympia X X      
South Seattle College Seattle X X 2008-2009    
Spokane Community College Spokane X X      
Spokane Falls Community College Spokane X X      
Tacoma Community College Tacoma X X      
Walla Walla Community College Walla Walla X X      
Wenatchee Valley College Wenatchee X X      
Whatcom Community College Bellingham X X      
Yakima Valley Community College Yakima X X      

Table 2: Apprenticeship Programs

Apprenticeship Program Name Instructional Program(s)
City of Seattle, Washington Apprenticeship Committee Mechanicand Repair Technologies/Technicians, Precision Production
Construction Industry Training Council of Washington (carpenter) Construction Trades
Construction Industry Training Council of Washington (construction electrician) Construction Trades
Construction Industry Training Council of Washington (plumber) Construction Trades
Eastern Washington - Northeast Oregon Pipe Trades Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Glaziers, Architectural Metal and Glassworkers Commercial Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
I.E.C. of Washington Apprenticeship and Training Committee Construction Trades
Inland Empire Electrical Training Trust Construction Trades
International Union of Elevator Constructors, Local 19 - National Elevator IndustryEducational Program Construction Trades
LU 112 - NECA Electrical Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Northwest Laborers Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Northwest Line Construction Industry JATC Mechanicand Repair Technologies/Technicians
Northwest Washington Electrical Industry Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee Construction Trades
Northwest Washington Pipe Trades Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Operating Engineers Regional Training Program JATC Construction Trades, Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians, Transportation and Materials Moving
Pacific Northwest Ironworkers & Employers Apprenticeship and Training CommitteeLocal #14 Construction Trades
Pacific Northwest Ironworkers and Employers Local #86 Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Pierce County Meatcutters Apprenticeship Committee PrecisionProduction
Pierce County Roofers Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Power Line Clearance and Tree Trimmers Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Puget Sound Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee Construction Trades, Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians
Puget Sound Energy Company Apprenticeship Committee Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians
Seattle and Vicinity Sprinkler Fitters Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Seattle Area Plumbers, Housing Plumbers, Pipefitters, HVAC/Refrigeration Mechanics,and Marine Pipefitters Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades, Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians
Seattle Area Roofers Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Seattle Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Seattle Meatcutters Apprenticeship Committee PrecisionProduction
Snohomish County P.U.D. Number 1 Apprenticeship Committee Mechanic and Repair Technologies/Technicians
Southeastern Washington/Northeastern Oregon Sheet Metal Workers Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Southwest Washington Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee Construction Trades
Southwest Washington Pipe Trades Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Sprinkler Fitters Apprenticeship Standards Construction Trades
Washington Cement Masons Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Washington State Department of Corrections Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Services
Washington State Department of Labor and Industries/Classified Employees JointApprenticeship and Training Committee Legal Professions and Studies
Washington State Fire Fighters Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Services
Washington State UBC JATC Construction Trades, Mechanicand Repair Technologies/Technicians
Western Washington Masonry Trades Apprenticeship Committee Construction Trades
Western Washington Operating Engineers Facilities Custodial Services ApprenticeshipCommittee Construction Trades
Western Washington Painting Apprenticeship Construction Trades
Western Washington Sheet Metal JATC Construction Trades

Frequently Asked Questions

Why are you providing this information?

The 2014 Legislature, via a budget proviso, requested that ERDC “create a report of employment and earnings outcomes for degrees, apprenticeships and certificates earned at institutions of higher education” (ESSB 6002, Sec 129). In addition, institutions have relied on graduate surveys to get important feedback information for accreditation and program improvement purposes. While wage outcomes are not the only way to evaluate a program, linking completion and employment data and providing this to institutions can assist them in decision-making.

What does this report display?

This website displays earnings of students who have received (completed) certificates or degrees (awards) from public colleges (includes community and technical colleges) and universities and for those who have completed apprenticeship programs in Washington and are employed in Washington.

Includes individuals:

  • Employed in Washington
  • Earning at least 75 percent of full‐time hours at Washington’s minimum wage
  • Working all four quarters in a calendar year

Does not include individuals:

  • Employed exclusively outside Washington
  • Earning less than 75 percent of full‐time hours at Washington’s minimum wage
  • That are self‐employed
  • Employed by the Federal Government

What does this report NOT represent?

This report does not represent employment rates or earnings for completers who are self-employed individuals, federal employees, and those employed exclusively outside Washington. It also does not include total numbers of certificates or degrees awarded by an institution or organization.

Is there any out-of-state employment data for Washington graduates?

Washington participated in a pilot project led by the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) and shared education and employment data with Oregon, Idaho, and Hawaii. However, that data is not included in this report. Reports from the pilot project are available here.

Can I save this report?

Yes. In the Tableau Toolbar, click on the Download button. You can save the Tableau Workbook and open it using either Tableau Public (free) or Tableau Desktop.

Alternatively, if you just want to save the data in CSV format, click anywhere in the graph of the data you want to download, and then click the Data button in the download menu.

Can I print this report?

Yes, click on the Download Button on the Tableau Toolbar. Save the report as an image or PDF and then print the image/PDF.

Why does a program need 30 graduates employed in Washington to show earnings information?

We adhere to the student and employment privacy laws that dictate how data should be publicly displayed. In addition, conclusions based on less than 30 people are less reliable.

I have questions that need more detailed information. Is this available to me?

We are happy to share de-identified data in the form of aggregated data tables or data sets. Please visit ERDC’s data request page for more information.

Use Cases

I am a high school junior and I know what institution I want to attend but would like to look at the earnings for different fields of study.

Step 1: Select the Browse by Institution navigation tab.

Step 2: Choose an institution (WA public college or university / apprenticeship)

Step 3: In the Find a Field of Study search box, begin typing the field of study you are interested in. The fields of study are at the highest level of aggregation, so specific majors are not available. For instance, “Aerospace Engineering” is not contained in this report – the appropriate selection would be “Engineering”.

Step 4: The earnings data for this field of study will be displayed for all Award Levels the institution you have selected offers.

I am a freshman at a community college and I want to earn a bachelor’s degree in history and I want to look at the earnings by different schools.

Step 1: Select the Browse by Major navigation tab.

Step 2: Select History from “Select a Field of Study.”

Step 3: In the top pane, you can view statewide median earnings for History majors for all award levels.

Step 4: In the bottom pane, Select “Bachelor’s” for the Award Level menu and select the different schools you are considering from the “Select Institutions to Display…” menu.

I am in middle school and I want to be an electrician. Does this website only show information for people who go to a university?

In addition to those who graduate from a college/university, this report contains data for individuals that have completed Apprenticeships that are overseen by the state Department of Labor and Industries.

Step 1: Select the Browse by Major navigation tab.

Step 2: Select Construction Trades from “Select a Field of Study.” The fields of study are at the highest level of aggregation, so specific trades may not be available. For instance, “Electrician” is in the Construction Trades category, along with Plumbers, Masons, Roofers, Carpenters, etc.

Step 3: In the top pane, you can view statewide median earnings for individuals with awards in the Construction trades for all award levels.

Step 4: In the bottom pane, select “Apprenticeship” for the Award Level menu to see the programs that are offered. You may be able to drill down to electrician programs based on the name of the Apprenticeship Program (eg “Puget Sound Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee”).

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