HigherEdMorning.comAlums turning to colleges for career help

Alums turning to colleges for career help

June 22, 2009 by Geneva Reid
Posted in: Admissions & Financial Aid, In this week's e-newsletter, Latest News & Views, Student Life

They may have graduated more than 30 years ago, but droves of job seekers now are turning to their college career offices for help. But are schools ready for them? 

Colleges from coast to coast are being deluged by alums in need of career coaching. Here are some stats from various career centers based on this past academic year, according to Forbes.com:

  • Brandeis University has seen a 30% jump in requests for help from alums older than 35
  • Appointments at the University of California have increased 33%
  • University of Illinois has received 50% more phone calls
  • It hasn’t been uncommon for there to be 40 people still sitting in the waiting room at New York University at closing time.

The large numbers aren’t easy for schools to accommodate – and what are they getting in return?

Most are banking on these alums “giving back,” in every sense of the word, once they land jobs.

To that end, here’s what some colleges are doing to handle the increased numbers:

  • An HR professional works with alums at no cost twice a week at Fordham University and holds monthly workshops on using technology to search for jobs.
  • At NYU, students have been trained as volunteer career counselors. The school also brings in HR pros – from companies that typically recruit there – to talk to alums.

Is your school seeing more alums coming to your campus for career advice? Let us know in the comments section below.

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  • http://TheUniversityofTexasatElPaso Hilario R. Monreal

    Our University is situated next to a military base. This presents with a unique situation in that, the average student is around 28-34 years of age. Some have a degree others are starting. This is also the case with the local community. The average student is 25-29 seeking a degree or just starting. This is not surprising considering the economy. Many people/students are coming “back” to get a degree or advance their studies to be more competitive in the work place and why not, education is still the best investment a person can make now for a better future. I can recite stats and how many unemployed we have but it is not necessary. Education is here and is competitive to the job market and the employers. The employers want more educated people to help them grow in a positive way. Sincerely, HRM

  • http://www.alumni.unc.edu Linda Conklin

    The General Alumni Association of the University of North Caolina at Chapel Hill has been offering Alumni Career Services for the past 15 years, providing lifelong career management services to help our alumni start, change and advance their careers. In addition to individual career coaching, workshops, Teleclasses, online career center, job listings and resume posting service, we provide an Alumni Advisior Network with over 5,500 volunteers who provide information, advice and support for our alumni.

  • http://careers.syr.edu Kelly Lux

    I work with alumni through the Center for Career Services at Syracuse University. I run an alumni mentoring program which is normally used by students to connect with alumni, but I have had a significant increase in alumni wishing to utilize the program for networking. This summer has been very busy with phone appointments with alumni who are looking for assisstance from their alma mater…and I have been helping them any way I can, including telling them how to utilize social media to their advantage.


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