Researchers and public officials traditionally focus on how much money recent graduates earn, R&D engagement, etc. The principal investigator of the College Educational Quality project, a study of two selective, midsize research institutions (one public, the other private) would like to see more outcomes linked to education rather than just economic (or how well recent graduates earn).
I agree! It is not about how grand an institution in terms of how many Nobel laureates it has as professors, or the amount of research expenditures and papers it produces. Neither, how many its graduates earn (this may vary with region and discipline, etc), but whether employers are satisfied with what the graduates know and are able to do with what they know.