September 16, 2008

Boeing Company to Rank Engineering Colleges

By Randy Hodgins

Monday’s Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required) had an eye-catching story about our local airplane manufacturer and their plans to rank colleges around the nation based on the job performance of the more than 35,000 engineers who work for the company worldwide.

Richard Stephens, Boeing’s Senior VP for Human Resources and Administration and a member of the Spellings Commission on the Future of Higher Education asked Boeing officials to match internal data from engineer personnel evaluations with the information about the colleges that they attended.  It will use this analysis to create an internal ranking system (which it plans to unveil in about a month), that will show which universities produce the workers that Boeing considers most valuable.

While Boeing plans to keep its ranking system confidential, it does plan to share the information with individual colleges and universities in an effort to help them improve themselves.  The top-ranked colleges, however, may be less interested in keeping the news quiet, according to Stephens in the Chronicle story.

Interested to see how the UW fares in this new system and whether other major employers in the nation develop similar ranking programs.

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