I often tell students, and their parents, that an education at Robert Morris University is an investment in their future. Now, we have proof that it’s not just a cliché.
Recently, the salary-consulting firm PayScale published its annual rankings of colleges and universities based on return on investment: how much graduates earn in salary versus how much they paid in tuition. You may have already read in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that the RMU School of Business was ranked No. 10 in the nation among schools of business for providing students the greatest ROI.
While the PayScale survey put a spotlight on the School of Business, alumni in all our academic programs shine, from education and health care, to engineering and communication, to actuarial science and information systems. A year after graduation, 93 percent of the class of 2012 are working or attending graduate school, and most of those who are working have a job in their field of study. Regular readers of the President’s Insider know that our placement rate is consistently above 90 percent, year after year, even in the toughest job market in recent memory.
Yet no investment comes without cost, and despite our efforts to keep tuition affordable (it’s still among the lowest of private institutions in Pennsylvania) many students struggle to pay. That’s why scholarships are among our chief fundraising priorities. During our Changing Lives, Building Futures capital campaign, we added 30 endowed scholarships thanks to generous donors like you, and doubled the amount of financial aid we give our students.
Frankly, though, we need to do more, especially when the alternative for many of our families is to take on staggering loads of debt, diminishing the value of their degree. Excellence requires investment, not only from students, but from the whole community. And as you will learn in the pages that follow, it really does pay dividends. Take Danny Bonaventura, who graduated in May with a degree in sport management and already has a job with the company that owns the NBA’s San Antonio Spurs. The scholarships that allowed Danny to attend RMU didn’t just help him land a job; he also made a friend at Robert Morris who changed his life.
Danny spoke at our annual Scholarship Luncheon, one of our favorite traditions at RMU, where scholarship donors get to meet the students who benefit from their generosity. Also speaking at the event this year were Colonial Couple Jim and Ellen Brehove, who have endowed a scholarshipfor students from New Jersey. In this President’s Insider, you can read about the Brehoves and the student who receives their scholarship, Sara Simon, a double major in sport management and accounting and a member of our NCAA Division I rowing team. Sara’s dream is to launch an investment firm catering to professional athletes, and the Brehoves have given her a chance to realize it. Your gift to an RMU scholarship fund is an investment in our students. As with Danny and Sara, it will change their lives for the better, and for good.
Gregory G. Dell’Omo, Ph.D.
The President's Insider is published quarterly for members of the President's Council. To have the newsletter delivered to your home, join the President's Council today.