A 2011 survey of college alumni reveals several areas of distinction for Minnesota's Private Colleges, compared to alumni from major public universities in our six-state region.
The research also looked at the views of graduates of national highly selective private colleges, as defined by U.S. News and World Report. On many questions, the results from graduates of Minnesota’s Private Colleges were at or above the levels reported by graduates of the highly selective privates.
- Executive summary from Hardwick-Day
- Details on areas of distinction for Minnesota's Private Colleges
- Full report
- Newsletter story, "Alumni views reveal impact of higher ed choices"
Strength of faculty-student interaction
Our alumni reported stronger faculty-student interaction than alumni from national public universities in the region. The results were tied to:
- small class sizes
- classes taught by professors
- personal interaction with professors
- professors as role models
Cultivation of community and engagement
Our alumni reported more frequently that they developed a sense of community on campus and became more involved in different experiential learning opportunities than alumni from major public universities in the region. These results were tied to:
- sense of community among students
- study off-campus and abroad
Satisfaction with education
Our alumni reported more satisfaction with their education than alumni from national public universities in the region. These results were tied to:
- quality of education
- graduating in four years
- quality of references for first jobs and grad schools
- quality of preparation for first jobs and grad schools
Preparation for life and career
Our alumni more frequently said that their experiences in college provided stronger preparation for life and career than did alumni from national public universities in the region. These results were tied to:
- leadership development
- moral principles
- sense of purpose in life
Conducted by Minneapolis-St. Paul-based Hardwick-Day for the Minnesota Private College Council, this research involved surveying 364 alumni who graduated between 1980 and 2006 from all 17 of our member institutions. As for alumni from other institutions, 249 interviews were done with alumni for major public research universities in the region — including University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, University of Wisconsin-Madison and North Dakota State University. And 219 alumni from highly selective private colleges and universities, based on US News and World Report rankings, were also gathered as part of this research.