If you have big ambitions of landing a great job when you graduate university, choosing the right institution to study at is a really important step.
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Employers around the world are looking for work-ready graduates from amazing universities that have strong industry links. But which universities are these exactly? Which will give you the best chance of getting a great job after you’ve graduated?
The Times Higher Education Global Employability survey ranks universities according to the number of graduates who get a job in their field as soon as they receive that all-important degree.
Here’s the top 10:
1. Harvard University, US
Harvard University is one of the most famous colleges in the world. Located near Boston in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and with hundreds of years of influence and excellence in higher education, it’s not surprising to see its graduates are at the top of the list for employment prospects. Above all, the institution’s brand is the key to its success in the rankings; employers around the world recognise Harvard as a leading university and clamber to hire their graduates.
US universities dominate this year’s ranking, thanks in part to employers perception of the country’s higher education system: they rate the work-readiness of graduates more highly than in any other developed economy.
2. University of Cambridge, UK
Cambridge, UK is home to one of the world’s oldest universities and has a global reputation for its leading research programmes. Its high standards and tough entry exams mean its alumni are sought after in the job market both in the UK and abroad.
The university took last year’s top spot, but loses out this year as employers’ perceptions of US universities have improved.
3. University of Oxford, UK
Along with Cambridge, the University of Oxford has a claim to being the UK’s most prestigious, and one of the top universities in the world. The university attracts students from around the world (its undergraduates are around 25% international), and its reputation among employers – which has propelled to third in this year’s ranking – is no doubt part of its appeal.
4. California Institute of Technology, US
The California Institute of Technology is a small, private university in the US, but its size does not mirror its influence in the jobs market. The college’s focus on science and technology subjects means its graduates, of which there are less than 1,000 a year, are well equipped with specialist skills to bring to the workplace. This was key to Caltech’s high ranking position; employers who took part in the survey said that specialist knowledge was the most important thing they look for in graduates.
5. Yale University, US
Yale is an Ivy League university based in New Haven, Connecticut. Founded in 1701, it’s the third-oldest university in the US, and also ranks third in the country for its students’ employment prospects.
Yale’s 2015 Destination of Leavers survey found that almost two-thirds (65.3%) of its graduates had started work on a salary above $50,000, with almost 40% reporting a starting salary of over $70,000.
Have you thought about the best country for employment too?
6. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, US
MIT was founded in response to the growing need for a workforce qualified to fuel the city’s industrial revolution, so it’s no surprise it does well in this ranking – it has a long history of giving students the skills demanded by the job market. As with the California Institute of Technology, a specialist focus sees MIT score highly in the eyes of employers. The college is also beginning to top university league tables of well-respected institutions, boosting its global reputation, and the job prospects of its graduates.
7. Stanford University, US
The second Californian institution in the list, Stanford University is located around 30 miles from the global epicentre of the tech industry – San Francisco. Its location outside the city hasn’t stopped the college from building and maintaining close ties with major companies, and its international prestige stands its graduates in good stead when it comes to finding work.
Stanford’s law students fair particularly well in the employment stakes; recent research found 93.2% of its law students were employed by the time they attended their graduation ceremonies.
8. Columbia University, US
Columbia University’s proximity to New York means that there’s no shortage of employers nearby waiting to snap up its students. There’s plenty of appetite for grads from this Ivy League institution, which has produced 20 of today’s living billionaires.
9. Princeton University, US
Originally founded in 1746 to train ministers, Princeton is now globally famous for its research and teaching excellence, with a humanities department that is among the very best in the world.
The institution’s most recent annual report found that 89% of its graduates were employed or continuing their education within six months of leaving Princeton.
10. University of Toronto, CA
The University of Toronto is Canada’s only entry in the top 10, though all four of the country’s institutions in the top 50 have risen this year. A public university that boasts notably lower tuition fees than many others on the list, UoT is frequently ranked as the best in the country and in the top 20 universities worldwide. No wonder its grads have no trouble finding work!
Toronto has climbed 14 places since 2012, due to the university’s range of courses that focus on career readiness. For example, its Faculty of Arts and Science runs a two-day event for its students and recent graduates at which most of the speakers and guests are alumni, and many of them employers.
Although the top 10 is dominated by colleges in US and UK, the rest of the list includes universities from all over the world, in countries such as Japan, Hong Kong, France, Korea, Australia, Singapore and China. In fact, the Technical University of Munich in Germany and the University of Tokyo in Japan are ranked 11 and 12 on the list.
The full list of universities is:
1. Harvard University, United States
2. University of Cambridge ,United Kingdom
3. University of Oxford, United Kingdom
4. California Institute of Technology, United States
5. Yale University, United States
6. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, United States
7. Stanford University, United States
8. Columbia University, United States
9. Princeton University, United States
10. University of Toronto, Canada
11. Technical University of Munich, Germany
12. University of Tokyo, Japan
13. École Normale Supérieure, France
14. Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong
15. Imperial College London, United Kingdom
16. Peking University, China
17. National University of Singapore. Singapore
18. Duke University, United States
19. University of California, Berkeley, United States
20. Indian Institute of Science, India
21. McGill University, Montréal Canada
22. Mines ParisTech, France
23. University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom
24. University of Manchester, United Kingdom
25. HEC Paris, France
26. Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan
27. IE University, Spain
28. Johns Hopkins University, United States
29. New York University, United States
30. University College London, United Kingdom
31. Boston University, United States
32. Australian National University, Canberra, Australia
33. University of Melbourne, Australia
34. Fudan University, China
35. CentraleSupélec, France
36. École Polytechnique, France
37. ETH Zurich – Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich, Switzerland
38. Cornell University, United States
39. University of British Columbia, Canada
40. Heidelberg University, Germany
41. LMU Munich, Germany
42. University of Sydney, Australia
43. King’s College London, United Kingdom
44. University of Montreal, Canada
45. London School of Economics and Political Science, United Kingdom
46. Boston College, United States
47. Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany
48. University of California, Los Angeles, United States
49. Ghent University, Belgium
50. London Business School, United Kingdom
51. École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland
52. University of Copenhagen, Denmark
53. Kyoto University, Japan
54. University of Chicago, United States
55. University of New South Wales, Australia
56. Monash University, Melbourne, Australia
57. Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China
58. University of Navarra, Spain
59. Tsinghua University, China
60. Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
61. University of California, San Francisco, United States
62. KU Leuven, Belgium
63. Dartmouth College, United States
64. École de Management de Lyon, France
65. ESSEC Business School, France
66. Stockholm University, Sweden
67. Humboldt University of Berlin, Germany
=68. University of Zurich, Switzerland
=68. Brown University, United States
70. Indian School of Business, India
71. University of California, San Diego, United States
72. University of Helsinki, Finland
73. University of Pennsylvania, United States
74. University of Bristol, United Kingdom
=75. Delft University of Technology, Netherlands
=75. Michigan State University, United States
77. Carnegie Mellon University, United States
78. University of Nottingham, United Kingdom
79. Georgetown University, United States
80. University of Birmingham, United Kingdom
81. University of São Paulo, Brazil
82. Frankfurt School of Finance and Management, Germany
83. University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
84. Lund University, Sweden
85. Erasmus University Rotterdam, Netherlands
86. McMaster University, Canada
87. University of Göttingen, Germany
88. Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), Korea
89. Northwestern University, United States
90. Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, India
91. University of Washington, United States
92. Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel
93. Technical University of Berlin, Germany
94. Bocconi University, Italy
95. University of Lausanne, Switzerland
96. National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (Taiwan Tech), Taiwan
97. Case Western Reserve University, United States
98. Ohio State University, United States
99. University of Southern California, United States
100. KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden
=101. University of Texas at Austin, United States
=101. University of Bern, Switzerland
103. Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands
104. Leiden University, Netherlands
105. Pierre and Marie Curie University, France
106. ESADE Business School, Spain
107. Polytechnic University of Milan, Italy
108. Texas A&M University, United States
109. Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, Mexico
110. Getulio Vargas Foundation, Brazil
111. Rice University, United States
=112. Pohang University of Science and Technology, Korea Republic of
=112. Technical University of Denmark, Denmark
114. University of Groningen, Netherlands
=115. Paris-Sud University, France
=115. Brigham Young University, United States
=117. Seoul National University, Korea Republic of
=117. Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
=119. Purdue University, United States
=119. University of Alberta, Canada
=119. Trinity College, Dublin Ireland
=122. Osaka University, Japan
=122. National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico
=124. Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, United States
=124. Karolinska Institute, Sweden
=124. Nanjing University, China
=127. Zhejiang University, China
=127. University of Florida, United States
=127. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russian Federation
=127. University of Michigan, United States
=127. Georgia Institute of Technology, United States
=132. Keio University, Japan
=132. Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisa, Italy
134. University of Basel, Switzerland
135. Technion Israel Institute of Technology, Israel
136. Sciences Po, France
137. Yonsei University, Korea Republic of
138. National Taiwan University, Taiwan
139. University of Wisconsin-Madison, United States
140. University of Auckland, New Zealand
141. University of Oslo, Norway
142. Saint Petersburg State University, Russian Federation
143. University of Geneva, Switzerland
144. National Tsing Hua University, Taiwan
145. City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
146. Tel Aviv University, Israel
=147. University of Science and Technology of China, China
=147. Bauman Moscow State Technical University, Russian Federation
149. University of Vienna, Austria
150. King Saud University, Saudi Arabia
The university rankings were based on on the votes of more than 2,000 recruiters and over 2,000 managing directors of international companies across 20 countries. It found that the area of degree specialisation is the most important criteria that employers consider in graduate applicants.
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