Fourth-years with business jobs thank CAPS

Many graduating fourth-years going into the business sector credit a relative abundance of jobs to help from the University’s Career Advising and Planning Services (CAPS).

By Barbra Kim

Many graduating fourth-years going into the business sector credit a relative abundance of jobs to help from the University’s Career Advising and Planning Services (CAPS).

Though CAPS has yet to release job data, many fourth-years going into business who spoke to the Maroon said they had jobs in their planned career path lined up.

Frances Low credited CAPS with helping her find positions through on-campus recruiting. “It was definitely convenient because everything is in one place. Having interviews on campus makes it a lot easier. When looking for jobs outside of CAPS, you’re just one of thousands,” said Low, who will be working as an associate consultant at Bain & Company.

According to last year’s CAPS exit surveys, in which graduating seniors are polled on their job situation, 70 percent were employed full-time, 24 percent attended graduate or professional schools, and the remaining 6 percent took time off.

CAPS Director Meredith Daw was optimistic for this year’s exit surveys—due to be distributed in mid-May—showing higher employment rates this year. “We have been aggressively working with our alumni base and employers to provide more opportunities. There are more opportunities this year than last year,” Daw said.

Recent data compiled by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, a national nonprofit focusing on recruiting and college careers, indicates that employers plan to hire 5.3 percent more college graduates this year than last year, and the unemployment rate for bachelor’s degree holders between 20 to 24 was 7.2 percent in March, The Wall Street Journal reported April 3.

Daniel Park, who will be working as a technology consultant for eLoyalty, found his job through CAPS as well. “Sure, the university helped me in letting me know what is out there. I would have never known about the tech consulting world had I not gone through CAPS.”

Nathan Chan, a fourth year with a job at consulting company Cornerstone Research that he found on Chicago Career Connection, said CAPS told him how to improve his interviews. “Most of my friends with jobs started thinking of jobs early during recruiting,” he said.

Other graduating fourth-years are looking to graduate school and teaching programs in the hopes of staving off post-college recessionary unemployment, and some did so without CAPS’ help.

Abimbola Oladokun, who will be stationed in Miami with Teach for America, said, “I know there are lots of people that religiously go to CAPS, but I try to do things on my own.”

For fourth-year Cinema and Media Studies major Sarah Marikar, internships, not CAPS interviews, are the ticket. Marikar plans to be a freelance lighting technician after interning on a film set for the past two years. Marikar said her future employment depends on her personal networking skills. ”My employment will vary job by job. I know people who have said they would put me in contact with others in movies, TV and commercials,” she said.

For those fourth-years without job opportunities, Daw said CAPS reaches out to them personally. Special walk-in days for seniors are set aside near graduation, and phone advising is available over the summer.

The statistics of the graduating class will be available in June. Follow-up surveys are sent in August and in the spring as well.

But finding a job is just one worry of the adult world. ”There aren’t a lot of entry level positions that will pay for my student loans. The nonprofit jobs pay so little,” said Fundamentals major Aaron Goggan.