GVSU continues Michigan brain gain

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ALLENDALE, Mich. — With the current struggles in Michigan's economy, some experts are concerned that there is a "brain drain" of talented and highly educated young people leaving the state. But with nearly nine out of 10 of Grand Valley State University's 2009 graduates employed or in graduate school in Michigan, the university continues to provide the state a brain gain.

Some 2,500 students will participate in Grand Valley State University’s commencement ceremonies May 1 at Van Andel Arena in downtown Grand Rapids. As those new graduates move on to careers or further studies, an April 30 issued by Grand Valley State University's Career Services office shows that 91.5 percent of Grand Valley's 2009 graduates are employed or in graduate school. Of those graduates, 88 percent have remained in Michigan.

"The experiences of these students offer examples of how a college education is the best way to a good living and a good life in Michigan," said Troy Farley, director of Grand Valley's career services office. "Producing more college graduates and keeping them in the state is a key for Michigan’s economic recovery because talent, jobs and prosperity are interconnected."

Farley attributed the success in part to Grand Valley's focus on experiential learning. According to the report, some 5,900 students participated in experiential learning — which includes student teaching, internships and co-ops and other types of practical out-of-the-classroom experiences.

Other statistics from the report include:
-- 72.3 percent of 2009 graduates are employed
-- 19.2 percent of 2009 graduates are in graduate school
-- Of 2009 graduates, 42 percent are employed in business/industry, 29 percent in education, 17 percent in health care and 12 percent in the nonprofit sector

For more information about Grand Valley's Career Services office, visit www.gvsu.edu/careers.

About Grand Valley State University
Grand Valley State University, established in 1960, is a four-year public university. It attracts more than 24,400 students with its high quality programs and state-of-the-art facilities. Grand Valley provides a fully accredited liberal undergraduate and graduate education and has campuses in Allendale, Grand Rapids and Holland, and centers in Muskegon and Traverse City. Grand Valley is a comprehensive university serving students from all 83 Michigan counties and dozens of other states and foreign countries. Grand Valley offers 77 undergraduate and 28 graduate degree programs. The university is dedicated to individual student achievement, going beyond the traditional classroom experience, with research opportunities and business partnerships. Grand Valley employs more than 1,700 people and is committed to providing a fair and equitable environment for the continued success of all.