New workforce reports highlight University of Alaska graduate outcomes and the impact the UA System has in preparing Alaska’s workforce

May 26, 2023

The University of Alaska (UA) partnered with the State Department of Labor and Workforce Development to create workforce reports that demonstrate UA graduate outcomes across 11 industries important to Alaska’s economy: administration & finance, construction, education, fisheries & marine science, health, hospitality & tourism, information technology, law & public safety, mining, oil & gas, and transportation. These reports capture the impact that university programs have in preparing students to join Alaska’s workforce.  

The reports answer key questions related to the largest and fastest growing occupations that require some postsecondary education, and highlight actual UA graduate employment outcomes from 2011 to 2022, including average wages earned, where they work in Alaska, what industries they work in, and how they help boost the Alaska hire rate. The reports can be found at

Since 2011, 26,945 students have graduated from programs relevant to these high demand industries, and 94.8 percent of working graduates are Alaska residents who are averaging $64,000 to $78,000 annually after five years. 

The reports cover the breadth of programs from short-term occupational endorsements and certificates to two-year associate degrees, and bachelor and graduate degrees. Each report features a table of available UA programs related to key occupations within each industry. Potential and current students can clearly match their interests to UA programs and occupations in the highest demand industries.  

The University of Alaska system is the most comprehensive provider of career and technical education training (CTE) in Alaska. With more than 200 CTE programs to choose from, students have opportunities to earn non-credit industry recognized certifications, endorsements, certificates and degrees in two years or less. This provides students a fast track to employment and the opportunity to earn credits toward future degrees to advance their careers. 

UA will utilize these reports to:

  •  inform program‐level decisions 
  • expand industry partnerships to provide opportunities for current students and future graduates 
  • advocate for legislative support 
  • enhance recruitment, advise students, and partner with school districts to develop or strengthen career pathways between secondary and postsecondary, and, 
  • demonstrate to donors and industry partners the impact of investment in UA’s workforce programs 

“Working with these stakeholders, UA can expand partnerships to benefit key workforce sectors and provide opportunities for current students and future graduates by improving programs, increasing internship opportunities, and advising on program development,” Cothren said.

Industry partnerships across Alaska’s workforce sectors strengthen the university’s graduate outcomes by providing hands-on opportunities for students, guiding program development to ensure alignment with industry standards, serving on advisory boards to improve training outcomes, providing program or scholarship funding, and employing graduates. 

“Workforce development is a critical part of the University of Alaska mission. These reports demonstrate the success of our programs and how we are contributing to Alaska’s high‐demand industries and economy,” said Teri Cothren, University of Alaska Associate Vice President Workforce Development.