University expands job guarantee


Grand Rapids-based Davenport University serves about 7,500 students on campuses across the state and online, with more than 60 undergraduate and graduate programs. Courtesy Davenport University

A local university is expanding its employment guarantee to more students.

Grand Rapids-based Davenport University said yesterday it will include eligible students in two more academic programs in the employment guarantee program it launched in August 2014: its bachelor of science in nursing/pre-licensure program and bachelor of science in network management and security program.

The original version of the employment guarantee only included students in the bachelor of business administration in accounting program.

The guarantee

The employment guarantee “provides additional semesters of education for graduates who have met all requirements but are unable to find employment within six months of graduation.”

Graduates who qualify may receive up to three additional semesters — 48 credits total — of instruction tuition free, with students responsible for fees and books.

The additional courses would be geared toward helping students obtain a second major or complete most of a master’s degree.

Pilot and expansion

The pilot program saw about 192 students graduate with eligibility for the guarantee, with a 100-percent employment rate. Now the guarantee will be offered to about 1,100 students in the accounting, nursing and network management and security majors.

“With the success of our employment guarantee for our accounting majors, there was no question we would open this up to other programs,” said Rick Pappas, president, Davenport University. “Nursing and network management and security are strong programs with even stronger employment opportunities. We are confident in our ability to prepare our students for in-demand careers, and we’re willing to back that up with a guarantee.”

Shelley Lowe, executive director of career services at Davenport, said the nursing and network management and security programs were chosen, because “next to accounting, they are the two highest market demand programs” at Davenport.

“We look at where the industry needs the most talent, and we look to cultivate that talent for them,” Lowe said.


To be eligible for the employment guarantee program, students must meet a set of criteria: achieve a final GPA of 3.0 or higher and have completed the program within six years of starting; complete an internship and other experiential learning components; be eligible for legal employment in the U.S.; conduct a thorough, documented job search; and nursing graduates must pass their state board exams following graduation.


Founded in 1866, Davenport University serves more than 8,000 students at campuses across Michigan and online.

Davenport offers more than 80 undergraduate and graduate programs for careers in business, technology, health professions and urban education.

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