I overhead a very disturbing conversation on campus on my way to lunch yesterday.
Boy A: GPA is overrated.
Boy B: How so?
Boy A: It’s not important unless you plan to go into grad school or academia.
They then turned into an academic building, I hope to attend class. My concern about the conversation isn’t so much that the students are incorrect, it’s that in the super competitive post-graduation job market, wouldn’t you want every advantage possible?
GPA matters in school, especially college. Too low and you could lose a scholarship or possibly won’t get into the school (journalism, education, business, etc.) you want. Even lower and you could be put on academic probation, or worse asked to leave.
Your GPA matters less in your professional life, but still has an impact. In 2005, according to a survey of the National Association of Colleges and Employers reported on Career Builder, 70 percent of hiring managers do report screening applicants based on their GPA, but the largest group say they use a 3.0 as their cutoff.
So, yes, in theory, your GPA doesn’t matter to some employers (a small 30 percent), but do you really want to gamble your job future on that? All other things being equal, an employer might pick the student with a higher GPA.
If you’re a recent or soon-to-be graduate, are you getting questions about your GPA? Professionals, how did you handle GPA questions, if at all?