One year after Jerry Sandusky was arrested on charges of child sex abuse, Penn State has proved resilient with regard to international rankings as well as desirability among job recruiters, despite controversy that has arisen due to the case.
Student Mia Stokes (sophomore-psychology) was glad to know Penn State is still highly regarded, “since a lot of people said we weren’t going to get any jobs because of the scandal.”
Penn State’s situation is unique, so there is not much evidence that demonstrates how well the university will do in light of the case, though there is not any indication that recruiters’ relationships with the university have changed, said John Cheslock, senior research associate in the Center for the Study of Higher Education.
“A lot of rankings are very formulaic, and nothing in those measurements has changed or gone down,” Cheslock said. “We are a prominent research university with strong professors and students.”
This year, there has been indication that Penn State is still highly regarded by employers and others because of the turnout at the 2012 Fall Career Days at Penn State.
The 2012 Fall Career Days was the first since the release of the information about the Sandusky case, and, according to Jeff Garis, senior director of Career Services at Penn State, the number of companies in attendance was higher than ever.
The total number of companies present for all three days of the fair in 2009 was 572, and in 2012, that number had increased to 766, proving that Penn State students are still highly desirable to employers across the country, Garis said.
According to both Cheslock and Roger Williams, executive director of the Penn State Alumni Association, the case has not affected the excellence of Penn State’s students, faculty and programs, nor will it likely decrease the desirability of Penn State students to job recruiters.
“From everything I’ve seen in my nine years as executive director of the alumni association, I hear corporate recruiters and companies just rave about Penn State students-. [They say] that they are well-prepared, well-educated, hardworking, ready to prove themselves and don’t go into the work force with a sense of entitlement,” Williams said.