2013 Survey Statewide Results and Conclusions

  • Respondents were asked their primary reason for studying at California Community Colleges, and the majority (67%) indicated earning a certificate or degree (with or without transfer).  Figure 1 below shows the results.

Figure 1. Primary reason for studying

  • Respondents were asked why they stopped taking classes at California Community Colleges.  Here are the most frequently cited reasons, in rank order of frequency:
    • I completed the program (4,400)
    • My goals were met (4,205)
    • I transferred to another school (2,622)
    • I got a job (1,867)
    • I didn’t have enough time for classes (1,117)
    • Classes I needed were not available (1,081)
    • Family or personal reasons (948)
  • 56% of former students were “very satisfied” with the education and training they received and 35% were “satisfied” for an overall satisfaction rate of 92%.
  • 35% of respondents indicated they had transferred to a 4-year institution to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree.
  • 75% of respondents are employed for pay.  Figure 2 below shows the results.



Figure 2. Current Employment Status

  • Overall, statewide, students who transferred have twice the likelihood of being unemployed and not seeking employment, likely because they are enrolled at a four year institution.
  • Respondents were asked, if currently employed, how closely related their job is to their field of study at California Community Colleges.  Nearly half (48%) indicated they are working in the same field as their studies and training, followed by more than a fifth (22%) indicating they work in a field that is “close” to their studies and training, and 30% indicated their job is not related to their studies.
  • Of those respondents who engaged in a job search after finishing their studies, 32% reported finding a job and 11% were still looking (the remaining respondents were not looking or were already employed). Of those with a successful job search, 78% found a job within six months (61% within three months).
  • 3,963 respondents (8%) indicated they obtained an industry certification or licensure and 754 (2%) indicated they obtained journey-level status in the same field of study after finishing their coursework.
  • Before their studies, 52% of respondents worked full time.  After completing their studies, 64% work full time.  Figure 3 below shows the results.

Figure 3. Work status before studies/training and after


  • The hourly wage of all respondents increased 28% from their hourly wage before their studies ($18.34) to their hourly wage after completing their studies ($23.51).

Figure 4. Earnings before studies/training and after


  • Respondents were asked what impact their coursework had on their employment.  Here are the reasons, listed in rank order of frequency:
    • Prepared me for a possible new job (251)
    • Enabled me to learn skills that allowed me to get a job at a new organization (240
    • No impact on my employment (186)
    • Enabled me to learn skills that allowed me to stay in my current job (115)
    • Enabled me to learn skills that allowed me to get a promotion at my same organization (63)
    • Enabled me to start my own business (58)
Summary and Conclusions

The results of the survey showed that completing CTE studies and training – whether or not a credential is earned, whether or not a student transfers – is related to positive employment outcomes.  The preponderance of respondents are employed, are working in the same field as their studies or training, and are working full time.  Respondents overall posted a 28% increase in their hourly wage after completing their studies at California Community Colleges and the vast majority were satisfied with the education and training they received.


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