The variables involved in career formation are complex and linked to the global economy and to the diversity and volume of entry-level positions available to liberal arts college graduates at a given point in time. At Harvard College, close to 83% of undergraduate students will return to graduate or professional school. This means that students are not selecting a career at graduation but are exploring one, two or three year “next step” experiences that will help them build skills that they can later apply to the questions and problems they are interested in addressing.
Harvard College Senior Survey
The Senior Survey data below is a snap shot of where students find entry-level opportunities at graduation, but it is not a representation of what they end up doing later on after they have acquired advanced skills and training. For example, only 5% of the Class of 2016 considered themselves to be working in the health sector at graduation; yet, historically, toward 18% of each class attend medical school and have careers in health. Please keep these limitations in mind when examining the data.
Harvard College Summer Experiences
The data below is also from graduating students' responses to the Senior Survey. Seniors were asked to indicate how they spent their three summers between class years while at Harvard.
OCS Annual Report 2016-17