Many of you will have visited a university careers centre at some point, but most likely at a time when there were many more opportunities open to graduates and career paths were much more certain. These days, graduates struggle to find a job, let alone map out a career structure spanning a decade or more.
So, is it time for this centralised university service to reinvent itself? Today’s students and recent alumni want a more personalised approach, geared to a common goal : if not further training or education, then guaranteed employment. This suggests, in part, that career centres should start thinking and acting more like recruitment companies with dedicated consultants, motivated and, indeed, rewarded for placing students and graduates into jobs.
Undergraduates are notorious for leaving things to the last minute, in favour of dealing with the here and now, and job searching is not immune to this mindset. Many students turn up at the career centre in their last term of study, just before graduation, panicked by the realisation that they will be graduates in a matter of months but still have no job or prospect of employment.