Graduate employability: top universities in the United States ranked by employers 2019

US universities producing the most employable graduates have been ranked by companies around the world in the Global University Employability Ranking 2019

November 21 2019
Harvard Yard

In total, 56 US universities appear in the Global University Employability Ranking 2019, designed by HR consultancy Emerging and published exclusively by Times Higher Education. The ranking reveals which universities recruiters at top companies think are the best at preparing students for the workplace.

The top 10 includes many of the usual suspects – Harvard University, California Institute of Technology and Stanford University – but also New York University, which is not always found at the top of university rankings.

Tuition fees at US colleges vary widely, particularly for international students, so value for money arguably depends both on tuition fees and how likely graduates are to be successful in their future career.

A number of state universities in the US, such as the University of California, Berkeley, which generally have lower tuition fees, do particularly well when evaluated by employers.


Employability rankings by country

Top universities in the world for employability
Top universities in the UK for employability
Top universities in Canada for employability
Top universities in Australia for employability
Top universities in the Netherlands for employability
Top universities in France for employability
Top universities in Germany for employability 


Top three universities in the US for graduate employability

1. Harvard University

Harvard is not only one of the most prestigious universities in the world, it is also the top choice for recruiters, for many reasons.

Students are taught by world-leading academics and can take advantage of events on campus outside the core curriculum, on topics ranging from Chilean film to the psychology of prosperity.

Alumni are supplied with a HarvardKey, which gives them access to an alumni directory to help them build a strong professional network.

2. California Institute of Technology

According to the Caltech website, a high percentage of graduates go straight into the workforce. Many of these students have been recruited on campus. 

The Career Development Center at the university provides networking sessions and twice-annual careers fairs to assist students in finding a job. Approximately 150 recruiters from various fields are present at each fair. 

3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Graduates of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have helped to develop some of the most innovative technologies of today, such as 3D printing and bionic prostheses. 

Among MIT’s alumni are 89 Nobel Laureates, 58 National Medal of Science Winners and 48 MacArthur Fellows. 


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Top universities in the United States for graduate employability 2019

Click each institution to view its full World University Rankings 2020 results

US Rank 2019  Employability Rank 2019  Employability Rank 2018  Institution State  City
1 1 1 Harvard University Massachusetts Cambridge
2 2 2 California Institute of Technology California Pasadena
3 3 3 Massachusetts Institute of Technology Massachusetts Cambridge
4 5 5 Stanford University California Stanford
5 8 7 Princeton University New Jersey Princeton
6 9 8 Yale University Connecticut New Haven
7 13 14 Columbia University New York New York City
8 16 15 New York University New York New York City
9 21 21 Johns Hopkins University Maryland Baltimore
10 24 22 University of California, Berkeley California Berkeley
11 27 27 Dartmouth College New Hampshire Hanover
12 38 42 University of Chicago Illinois Chicago
13 42 40 Duke University North Carolina Durham
14 56 41 Rice University Texas Houston
15 63 62 University of California, Los Angeles California Los Angeles
16 67 47 Brown University Rhode Island Providence
17 70 65 Cornell University New York Ithaca
18 75 67 Boston University Massachusetts Boston
19 76 93 Georgia Institute of Technology Georgia Atlanta
20 82 106 University of Pennsylvania Pennsylvania Philadelphia
21 84 68 Tufts University Massachusetts Medford
22 88 61 Carnegie Mellon University Pennsylvania Pittsburgh
23 100 94 Georgetown University Washington DC  
24 110 109 University of Texas at Austin Texas Austin
25 119 115 Northwestern University Illinois Evanston
26 121 118 Texas A&M University Texas College Station
27 131 125 Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey New Jersey New Brunswick
28 135 135 University of Southern California California Los Angeles
29 137 126 Purdue University West Lafayette Indiana West Lafayette
30 151 200-250 University of Massachusetts Massachusetts Amherst
31 152 145 Boston College Massachusetts Boston
32 160 150-200 Arizona State University Arizona Tempe
33 163 150-200 Florida Institute of Technology Florida Melbourne
34 164 54 Brigham Young University Utah  Provo
35 171 136 George Washington University Washington DC  
36 172 200-250 Babson College Massachusetts Wellesley
37 184 150-200 Brandeis University Massachusetts Waltham
38 198 148 Vanderbilt University Tennessee Nashville
39 199 150-200 Case Western Reserve University Ohio Cleveland
40 200 150-200 Pennsylvania State University Pennsylvania State College
41 201 150-200 University of California, San Francisco California San Diego
42 202 200-250 Emory University Georgia Atlanta
43 203 200-250 Michigan State University Michigan East Lansing
44 207 57 Ohio State University Ohio Columbus
45 208 200-250 University of Notre Dame Indiana Notre Dame
46 211 n/a University of California, San Diego California San Diego
47 213 200-250 Washington University in St Louis Missouri St Louis
48 216 200-250 University of Virginia Virginia Charlottesville
49 224 150-200 Northeastern University Massachusetts Boston
50 225 200-250 University of Wisconsin-Madison Wisconsin Madison
51 227 200-250 University of California, Santa Barbara California Santa Barbara
52 232 150-200 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Illinois Champaign
53 239 150-200 University of Michigan-Ann Arbor Michigan Ann Arbor
54 244 150-200 Stony Brook University New York Stony Brook
55 245 200-250 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill North Carolina Chapel Hill
56 246 200-250 Pomona College California Claremont

See the full results of the Global University Employability Ranking 2019

Reader's comments (1)

It's very important for students to understand that it's not only your university's / college's national ranking - or even global ranking that counts - but your prospective employer's opinions of said institutions' graduates. Of course, you can't control this, but it's important to research what employers will expect from yourself and your classmates as opposed to those from other universities. There is definitely a similar theme in the UK, especially with the top 5-10 universities and the types of students that attend. Find out more: https://www.grb.uk.com/careers-advice - The GRB Team

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