New Recruiting Roles: The College Recruiter

WANTED: Creative recruiting professionals who understand what it takes to attract the next generation of talent and recruit the best candidates from colleges and universities.

Responsibilities: Developing strategies to attract on-campus talent, building relationships with colleges and their students and staff, interacting directly with students at career fairs, info sessions, and resume reviews, conducting interviews and candidate evaluations to identify the best candidates, promoting your company’s employer brand and shaping your company’s message to appeal to college students looking to advance their careers, and ensuring the campus recruiting strategy aligns with the current and future talent needs of the company.

College recruitment continues to become more and more competitive, with top students receiving multiple competing job offers. College graduates understand the contribution they bring to your company, having recent knowledge of the latest tools and technology that may take your current employees time and money to learn. With so many companies vying for their fresh minds and skill sets, top students have their pick of employer, making it more important than ever to stand out.

Companies understand that they need to find these valuable students who can make a real difference in their organization, and so they are recognizing the need to get some kind of competitive edge in their campus recruiting efforts. To guide these efforts, more companies have appointed designated specialists to build and drive a comprehensive college recruitment program to ensure they have a strong pipeline of the greatest talent to emerge from colleges and universities.

Who is the College Recruiter?

The College Recruiter, or similar titles like Campus Recruiting Specialist or University Recruiter, is one of the new breeds of recruiting positions to emerge in recent years as companies strive to attract and engage the best candidates before the competition. So, just like the Social Media Sourcer, Recruitment Marketing Specialist, Candidate Experience Manager and Employer Branding Specialist, the College Recruiter has become a critical component of any successful recruitment strategy.

Rather than waiting for top talent to apply to jobs at your company, a more proactive strategy is to actively find and reach out to top candidates before they graduate. And that’s exactly the job of the College Recruiter. By working closely with the schools themselves and building relationships with students and staff, the College Recruiter can seek further involvement through employer partnership programs, inviting students to your office or campus for events, sponsoring info-sessions, and being active on and off campus year-round at career building events. These recruiting specialists can help identify the best students who can be your company’s next great employees. Not only must they be effective at reaching out to promising students and engaging millennial talent, but they must also be able to showcase your company’s employer brand and highlight the unique opportunity working for your company affords them.

One of the College Recruiter’s main responsibilities is to understand their company’s talent needs and develop a comprehensive strategy to actively recruit the on-campus talent that can fulfill them. This can mean developing and managing an internship program to find individuals who want to gain valuable work experience while conducting their studies—and test-driving potential candidates you may want to convert once they graduate. It can also entail actively searching for those about to graduate and offering them a full-time role before they get swept up by another company.

College recruiting tools

To conduct their jobs, College Recruiters rely on a number of tools to help them connect, engage, and build relationships with students. For example, instead of posting internship opportunities or job ads on the typical job boards, where they can get lost in the flood or attract the wrong talent, they find other, fresh avenues.

Here are some to consider:

  1. WayUp provides a platform to post ads to a targeted audience of students. Users can select the type of talent they want, select a specific major, grade level and/or location, and only pay when a relevant candidate applies.

  2. Another new tool for College Recruiters is offered by Brazen, which facilitates virtual career fairs, enabling recruiters to connect with on-campus talent from anywhere while maintaining the relationship with promising candidates as they transition from student to employee.

  3. Rakuna is an on-campus recruiting platform that includes a mobile app to collect candidate leads and process paper resumes at college recruiting events, helping College Recruiters stay organized and move candidates into the pipeline faster as they find potential talent.

  4. HireCanvas is another valuable tool, offering a mobile recruiting CRM that helps employers coordinate their campus recruiting efforts, improve campus branding, and track ROI per school.


As college recruiting has only become more competitive, organizations must think about how they can reach top talent, not only before the competition does, but also to establish their competitive edge with emerging talent. You must think about how you’re going to leave a memorable impression on students, so that even if they don’t join your company now, they remember you months or years down the road. Designating a dedicated College Recruiter will be instrumental in accomplishing this.

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Betsy Ayala

Betsy Ayala is Talent Marketing Manager at Greenhouse, where she gets to share her love for storytelling by spotlighting its talented employees. Before joining Greenhouse, Betsy was the Talent Community Manager at BrightRoll where she managed the college recruitment program and focused on employer branding with an emphasis on highlighting the engineering team and diversity in tech. In her spare time, Betsy enjoys cycling, documentaries, burritos, and Game of Thrones - R.I.P. Hodor. Find Betsy on LinkedIn.

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