New Billboards Boast Kent State as Region’s Leader in College GraduatesPosted March 5, 2012 | Emily Vincent
New billboards for Kent State University boldly state: Kent State. #1 in college graduates in Northeast Ohio
The new billboard campaign seen in the Greater Cleveland and Akron areas boasts Kent State as the leader in the total number of graduates in Northeast Ohio. With more than 200,000 alumni with Kent State degrees, the university has produced the largest total number of graduates compared to any other public and private college and university in the region.
“Kent State students, our alumni and their families can take pride in their accomplishments,” says Iris Harvey, vice president for university relations at Kent State. “Kent State is a major institution in Ohio. Across the state and especially in Northeast Ohio, Kent State graduates are important and talented members of society and productive contributors in the state’s workforce. Every day, thousands of organizations benefit from the skills, education and creativity of Kent State graduates.”
As the call for the production of more college graduates accelerates at the state and national levels, Kent State is not only heeding the call of state policymakers for more educated Ohioans, but also making an impressive stand among national universities. In 2011, Kent State was ranked 14th in the nation for exceeding graduation rates. Based on an independent analysis conducted by Postsecondary Education OPPORTUNITY, the university’s high ranking indicates that Kent State’s graduation rate is 10 points higher than what would be expected given the preparedness of its students. This analysis speaks to the effectiveness of Kent State initiatives designed to help students persist in their studies.
The university recorded its highest spring enrollment in 2012 with more than 40,000 students. Significant investments are being made in evidence-based retention strategies. The institutional goal is to ensure that every Kent State student has the resources needed to be successful. This includes great faculty who care and nurture student talents, the Kent State University Math Emporium that helps students gain skills missed in high school, the Graduation Planning System (GPS) that charts the pathway to graduation, student support services, such as the Academic Success Center, and experiential learning opportunities, such as research, internships and education aboard, that make students practice-ready for careers.
According to Harvey, the emphasis on Kent State’s critical mass of 200,000 talented graduates is only one of many ways to highlight the university’s many successes.
“Every college and university has a different model for attracting and retaining students,” she further elaborates. “When looking at public versus private and four-year versus two-year colleges and universities, rates and rankings are highly correlated to an institutional model. As a public university that embraces access and affordability, Kent State’s system of eight geographically and demographically diverse campuses puts a value-added but affordable education in the reach of families across Northeast Ohio. We offer the choice of a safe, residential campus with the full range of student-life experiences, as well as seven community-anchored campuses where, without leaving home, students in nearly a dozen counties can obtain a Kent State degree.
“Here’s to another century of serving Ohio and the prospect of exceeding Kent State’s current 200,000 graduates,” Harvey continues. “For Ohio and the nation, the more talented college graduates, the better is the future of our state and nation.”