Graduates hugging at commencement

Career Development

A strong start at Bellarmine spells lasting success

Student Success

At Bellarmine University, our students start with the end in mind.

The university makes sure students get the experiences they need in the classroom and work world to begin and progress through their careers.

Experiential learning is a critical part of the Bellarmine experience, so much so, the university guarantees every student will have the opportunity to land an internship, develop a career plan and build a professional network.

Last year, 87% of students participated in more than 90 hours of experiential learning including internships, teaching, clinicals and research. That experience jump starts students’ professional lives.

“Our surveys reveal how incredibly career-ready our students are and how well-poised they are to become leaders in their fields,” said Dr. Lilly Massa-McKinley, assistant vice president of career development and strategic partnerships.

Bellarmine tracks and analyzes graduate outcomes on an ongoing basis and finds that: 

On average, Knights get hired and make more money than graduates from other universities. The average starting salary for BU grads is $50,000. Those who choose to pursue a graduate degree, the average salary is $68,000.

Bellarmine graduates have the highest earning potential of any Kentucky university 10 years after graduation and earn the highest mid-career salaries of any university in the state.

91 percent of Bellarmine graduates are working within their field of study.

“Do I feel prepared for life after Bellarmine? I feel like I have what I need, what I need to be equipped, to go out into the real world,” said Katy McWhorter, a Respiratory Therapy major. “Do I want to leave Bellarmine? Absolutely not. But do I feel like I can do this? Yes.”

Bellarmine’s professional support doesn’t end once students graduate, either. In fact, it lasts a lifetime.

Students get a dedicated career success advocate for six months after graduation. Bellarmine alumni have free career services for life, such as assistance with job searching, considering graduate school or transitioning to a new profession. Not to mention, the Bellarmine alumni network, which is more than 26,000 Knights strong, is constantly offering ways to gather, network and build skills.

“The Career Development Center at Bellarmine is really useful in terms of setting you up for a career after graduation,” said Spencer Brandenburg, a biology and psychology major. “I’ve personally taken part in the last two years in the alumni mentor program which hooks you up with a Bellarmine alum that works in your field of choice. If you have those alumni mentor connections through Bellarmine, hey, you might have a job right out the gate, you could have an internship while you’re at school.”

Tags: Career Development , Internship , Outcomes , Transformative Experience

About Bellarmine University

Bellarmine University is a vibrant community of educational excellence and ethical awareness that consistently ranks among the nation’s best colleges and universities. Our students pursue an education based in the liberal arts – and in the distinguished, inclusive Catholic tradition of educational excellence, the oldest and most rewarding in the western world. It is a lifelong education, worthy of the university’s namesake, Saint Robert Bellarmine, and of his invitation to each of us to learn and live In Veritatis Amore – in the love of all that is beautiful, true and good in life.