Amidst the Pandemic, Employment Outcomes for Batten Graduates Remain High

Lead from Anywhere
Graphic by Macy Brandon

Despite major disruptions in the hiring market posed by the coronavirus pandemic, Batten’s most recent graduates demonstrate that a Batten education continues to be in high demand among employers across sectors.

Of those seeking employment, 91% of alumni from Batten’s 2020 graduate and undergraduate classes secured positions within six months of graduating. “My team and I could not be more proud of Batten’s class of 2020 employment outcomes, especially during such uncertain times,” said Steve Hiss, director of career services at Batten. “Our graduates faced very daunting circumstances brought on by COVID-19, and we all admire their resilience in the face of unprecedented challenges.”

Of Batten’s 2020 Master of Public Policy graduates, 32% entered into the field of consulting, with 22% consulting government or nonprofit clients and 10% employed in private-sector consulting. Another 26% secured government positions, with 17% engaged at the federal level and 9% at the state level. Nine percent accepted private sector positions, and 10% are employed in the nonprofit sector. MPP graduates also took positions with research institutions, public interest groups and full-time service organizations, including Peace Corps and AmeriCorps.

“The ability to personalize my course of study while at Batten empowered me to explore what I really wanted out of a graduate education,” said Madeline Roth (MPP ’20), a program specialist within USAID’s Africa Bureau. “I could focus my efforts on courses that appealed to technical aspects I felt I was missing in the job market, like qualitative data analysis or on topical areas I felt I wanted a deeper understanding of, like U.S. national security and interagency cooperation. Additionally, Batten empowered me to seek out opportunities from other schools across UVA to get the best learning experience I could and to really make sure that my degree worked for me.”

Thirty-two percent of the 2020 graduates who completed Batten’s Bachelor of Arts in Public Policy and Leadership program have entered consulting roles, with 16% in private-sector consulting and 16% in government or nonprofit consulting. Another 32% secured positions in the private sector, and 14% are working in government positions, with 12% at the federal level and 2% at the state level. Similar to the MPP class of 2020, Batten’s BA graduates also took positions with research institutions, public interest groups and full-time service organizations.

“Through Batten's rigorous and multidisciplinary curriculum, I was able to translate my education into my interests in government, social justice and racial equity,” said Brian Zuluaga (BA ’20), an associate at the Centre for Public Impact (CPI). “Through leadership, writing and quantitative analysis development, I've been able to transition quite smoothly into my current role at CPI, where I support our inclusive economies and government legitimacy teams. From navigating different levels of public policy analysis and implementation to learning about the theory behind decision-making, I've been able to confidently contribute in conversations with public servants. I'm very grateful for my education at Batten for learning alongside other students passionate about public service and the importance of equity within policy-making and servant leadership. This environment of collaboration and collective problem-solving has proven essential to joining my team at CPI.”

The tight-knit Batten alumni network extends across the country and around the world. Ninety-five percent of 2020 graduates from both degree programs are working in the U.S., with a high concentration in the D.C. metro area. Others are working abroad in Ecuador, China, Japan, Spain and the U.K.

In addition to benefiting from an unparalleled education, Batten students receive access to the tools they need to succeed in their career searches. Batten’s career services staff offers a holistic approach to career preparation that includes resume reviews, career events and coaching, mock interviews and offer-negotiation assistance, empowering students to confidently pursue their career goals.

With this strong professional foundation, Batten alums are putting the School’s deepest values into practice, leading with passion and commitment to effect transformational change—even during this period of uncertainty.    

“As in years past, our 2020 graduates are heading out into the world to lead with curiosity, humility and purpose,” Hiss said.    

Garrett Hall at Sunset

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