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Nearly half of Class of 2002 pursues post-graduate degrees

Tuesday, October 19, 2004

SPARTANBURG, S.C. – Nearly half of the members of the Wofford College Class of 2002 have either earned post-graduate degrees or are actively pursuing them, up significantly from the Class of 2000.

A survey conducted recently by April Williams (Class of 2002), a Wofford staff member, and Lucas McMillan (2002), a former staff member who now is pursuing his master’s degree.

Over the course of the 2002 academic year (December, January, May, July or August), Wofford awarded 258 degrees. Up-to-date career information was available for 220 of those.

The survey revealed that 103, or 47 percent, have been involved in studies leading to a master’s, doctoral or professional degree. That is up significantly from 38 percent of the Class of 2000 enrolled in graduate school in a similar two-year period.

“We have always known that the majority of Wofford graduates eventually will earn advanced degrees,” says Dr. Dan Maultsby, vice president of academic affairs and dean of the college. “Two factors seem to influence their timing. One, obviously, is the world economic and political situation — are there high quality entry level jobs out there that encourage postponement of graduate school? The other factor is confidence in the preparation at Wofford that leads lots of seniors to apply immediately to competitive graduate and professional programs.”

The survey shows that 20 Wofford graduates of 2002 are now in medical doctoral programs. Another five are in dentistry. Also – five in pharmacy, two in nursing, and one each in veterinary science, physical therapy, and health care administration. That total represents about 16 percent of the class.

Law schools attracted 23 graduates. The most popular choice was the University of South Carolina School of Law, but graduates are studying in law schools at the University of Texas, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, the University of Florida, and the College of William and Mary.

Six students from the Class of 2002 are pursuing master of divinity degrees, with the largest number choosing the Duke Divinity School or the Candler School of Theology at Emory University.

The survey also revealed a good mix of career choices among those seniors who did not choose immediate graduate or professional study. Manufacturing or business administration attracted 27 seniors, with 26 choosing banking, finance or accounting; 23 choosing sales and marketing; 21 choosing government or the military; and 19 choosing teaching or educational administration.