Job opportunities for Texas A&M University students and graduates continue to be even more promising — based on the increasing number of recruiters coming to the campus and the volume of Career Center job postings.
Career Center Executive Director Leigh Turner reports that last year’s resurgence in demand for Aggie talent has continued and has even exceeded last year’s demand. “As we compare fall/spring of last year with this fall/spring, we have seen an increase of 20 percent in job postings and 10 percent in active recruiting companies. More than 3,000 companies will be seeking A&M students this year and representatives from some of these companies have made one or more campus visits,” Turner notes.
To accommodate the job-seeking students and the employee-seeking recruiters, the Career Center provides 30 interview rooms, which are in high demand during much of the school year, and it has a 31-member staff who assist both students and representatives of the off-campus entities, she adds. Those entities range from small companies to multinational corporations, including 80 percent of the Fortune 100, as well as state and federal agencies.
Actual hirings are harder to document than postings and “head-hunter” campus visits, and this year’s hiring season is still in high gear, she points out and says “there’s ample reason to believe that Aggies are doing well in the job market.”
Texas A&M annually produces about 12,000 graduates — those receiving baccalaureate, master’s, doctorates or professional degrees — including more than 7,300 this spring. That places Texas A&M among the most productive institutions in the nation in student graduation, Turner says.
Many of those graduates are in fields for which the demand is highest and the need is greatest, including several areas of engineering and for teachers in STEM (science, technology and math) fields. Some specific fields in which Texas A&M majors have been particularly in demand over the last few years include mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, computer science and finance.
“Regardless of major, employers continue to have a strong preference in hiring students with relevant work experience, problem-solving capabilities and excellent communication skills,” Turner points out, adding those are learning outcomes that are emphasized at Texas A&M.
She cites two other major contributing factors to the university’s placement successes: the increasing national reputation of Texas A&M as a source of “premium college talent” and the relatively good economy for Texas compared to other regions of the country. Texas A&M was ranked as the second-most-preferred source of college talent in a national survey of college recruiters by The Wall Street Journal last year, and this recognition has helped to drive the demand for Aggies, she notes.
“The survey makes it clear that companies like to forge relationships with top public universities that prepare students to succeed in their careers and find the one-stop Career Center approach to be an advantage.” Turner adds.
Also, a recent Associated Press article stated that “the southern U.S., anchored by Texas, was most likely to have young college graduates employed in higher skill jobs” versus all other regions of the U.S.
“This means that new graduates in Texas are employed in higher-paying and more professional positions, relative to graduates of other states and regions,” she observes.
Texas A&M students have still another advantage in the job market that is available to them to a degree not duplicated at many — if any — other colleges: alumni support.
“A unique and priceless asset that Texas A&M students have is the wealth of experience and contacts available through the ‘Aggie Network’,” Turner says, referring to the informal linking of members of Texas A&M’s 400,000-member alumni organization, formally known as The Association of Former Students. “On a daily basis, the staff of the Career Center help students to connect with former students to learn about their career options and to make invaluable contacts for internships and full-time employment.”
While Turner says she would obviously prefer to have more concrete information regarding the many successful placements in which the Career Center has had a hand, she cited recent feedback from the career coordinator for Texas A&M’s College of Liberal Arts as a prime example of good feedback. The coordinator, Tricia Barron, called special attention to a trio who reported back about landing “their dream jobs,” including one who signed on with a resort in Hawaii, another who joined a major consulting firm and the other who went with an IT (information technology) staffing firm.
More information about Texas A&M’s jobs-related activities is available in an article that appeared in the last spring semester issue of The Battalion, the university’s student newspaper.
Media contact: Lane Stephenson, News & Information Services at (979) 845-4662