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Why Don’t Most College Leaders Care About Student Employment Success?

Tell me why most college leaders show absolutely no interest in making certain that students get the job search preparation training and assistance they will need to compete for the best jobs. I don’t get it. The challenge is widely known; a solution is greatly needed; and the problem can be fixed. And yet, college leaders go merrily on there way without addressing the issue that can adversely affect every college grad for many years to come.

Possible reasons why college leaders are unwilling to confront the issue of job search preparation include the following:

1. Weak leaders avoid the difficult issues
2. Insensitive leaders do not care about student needs
3. Incapable leaders strive to maintain the status quo
4. The worst leaders put their own needs ahead of student needs

Is it that college leaders do not see what I see, do not hear what I hear or they just don’t care? Can it be that these college leaders do not recognize the pain of students who cannot obtain a job offer in their fields of interest or one that pays a living wage so they can pay back their loans and live on their own?

Sending good students out into the job market without the job search knowledge and tools that are needed to compete effectively is a violation of trust. These college leaders must have to worked very hard to bury their heads in the sand so deep that they can justify their uncaring behavior.

Because job search preparation encompasses so many things, it must begin immediately when students enter college and should not end until those students are offered jobs that will launch their careers. College leaders who think that a few visits to the Career Services office and a few clicks on the CS web site will enable students to conduct a comprehensive and effective job search are completely out of touch with reality.

Providing students with a good education is important, but a good education alone will not lead directly to a career opportunity for most students. To maximize their job search
capabilities, every student should:

1. Have a clear idea of where they are going
2. Create a step-by-step plan to get there
3. Work on the steps of their plans during each semester
4. Obtain the experiences and accomplishments that employers expect
5. Learn about and utilize cutting edge information, tools and materials
6. Participate in job search classes, training and practice sessions
7. Seek out and rely upon professional guidance and coaching
8. Understand what their target employers want
9. Work on the things that employers want, need and expect
10. Know what they have to offer and continually make improvements
11. Find ways to differentiate themselves from other qualified candidates
12. Build relationships with potential references, networking contacts and employers

Students need strong, caring college leaders who understand their needs, fight for them and help them reach their full potential. No student should become unemployed or underemployed simply because college leaders are not living up to their responsibilities. Perhaps college leaders who choose to ignore the critical issue of job search preparation should be invited to personally test the job market. What do you think?