Post-Completion Wages of Graduates
There is unquestionably much more to life and education than getting a job. Individuals pursue postsecondary education for a variety of reasons, including lifelong learning and personal skills development. They pursue higher levels of education to benefit their community, the Commonwealth, and the nation, as well as themselves. There is also no question that some individuals pursue a career as the primary focus of their educational pursuit. This is especially true when one considers the breadth of degree and certificate opportunities the public and independent colleges and universities of the Commonwealth have to offer.
Through the development of the Virginia Longitudinal Data System, guided by language in Virginia's Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2011, and required by the passage of HB 639 of 2012, SCHEV is now able to report wage and enrollment outcomes on a subset of graduates, at all levels of award, by institution.
Through the links below, users will be able to explore a variety of data about how much graduates earn 18 months following completion of a degree or certificate. In some cases we also have data on earnings at five years following completion.
In using the data contained within these reports, users should exercise great care to understand the limitations of the available data and their meaning. Wage outcomes of graduates do not measure the quality or effectiveness of any institution. Instead, they provide basic facts about the experiences of graduates after entering the workforce and indications as to broadest levels of outcome in the Commonwealth - full-time employment, part-time enrollment, and enrollment in higher-level programs.
SCHEV does not endorse or recommend using these data to evaluate program or institution quality.
Limits on the Display of Data
In order to protect confidentiality and to accommodate both the many small programs in the Commonwealth and the limits of the available data, these reports will display program-level data only under the following conditions:
- Single-year data will not be reported, only rolling five-year aggregates. For example, graduates of 2005-06 will be reported with those of 2004-05, 2003-04, 2002-03, and 2001-02.
- The number of wage-reported graduates must be equal to 10 or greater with full-time wage equivalent (FTWE) reported wages of those graduates employed in Virginia.
- At least 30% of graduate the cohort of graduates must have been matched and reported with full-time wage equivalent (FTWE) reported wages, or 20% with a minimum of 200 graduates.
- The program must have produced a minimum of three graduates in each of the five successive years.
- The current definition of FTWE is $13,195/year which represents 52 weeks of employment at 35 hours per week at $7.25/hour.
The wage data included in these reports represent only the following individuals:
- Graduates successfully matched to the Unemployment Insurance Wage records collected by the Virginia Employment Commission (VEC).
- Graduates employed in Virginia by an entity that reports to the VEC. This excludes federal employees, including those within the Department of Defense.
What employers are subject to the Unemployment Tax and must be registered and file with the Virginia Employment Commission? They must have met one of the following criteria:
- One or more employees (ten employees if your operation is agricultural) for some portion of a day during any 20 different weeks in a calendar year
- A $1,500 or more total gross quarterly payroll ($20,000 if your business is agricultural; $1,000 if domestic labor)
- Acquired a business subject to this tax*
- Been subject to the Federal Unemployment Tax
- You are a governmental operation or political subdivision
- A nonprofit organization under Section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and had four or more employees for some portion of a day during any 20 different weeks in a calendar year*
These criteria mean that individuals working as consultants, independent contractors (including many psychologists, counselors, barbers, and cosmetologists) may be excluded, as are a list of others that may be found at http://lis.virginia.gov/cgi-bin/legp604.exe?000+cod+60.2-219 .