GOLDEN, Colo. -- As Michaela Keeler walks around the Colorado School of Mines, the recent graduate is reminded of her passion.
"Infrastructure is huge, especially now with the United States growing so much," Keeler said. "As a civil engineer, it’s all about infrastructure."
She is about to begin a career as a project engineer in Dallas, but before she can start building bridges, she had to bridge the gap from graduating to landing her dream job. She says the School of Mines geared her toward that goal on the first day.
"You need to be going to [the] career fair, you need to be going to look at internships," Keeler said. "It just sets that standard that Mines has a goal to do well outside college."
That standard and reputation pushes admissions to accept highly qualified students, usually landing applicants in the top 10 percent of their high school class.
"Most people don’t realize that Colorado School of Mines isn’t just regionally known. We’re actually known worldwide as having the best of the best for engineers," said Career Center Director Jean Manning-Clark. "We have such an amazing group of students who are passionate."
As a result, the School of Mines says about 90 percent of its undergraduates and more than 94 percent of its graduate students have jobs or their next career step lined up after graduation. These numbers placed the school on Zippia's list of best colleges for employment after graduation. It as listed as the best school in Colorado in that regard.
Another attractive quality of Mines students for employers is the school's dedication to engineering.
"It doesn’t matter what you’re going into. You’re going to be working in some type of technology and that’s why engineers are important," Manning-Clark said.
At first, some students say the pressure of keeping up with Mines' academic standards can be overwhelming, but students support one another and encourage their peers to succeed.
"Once you get here, it turns out OK because of the community," Keeler said.