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Barry University Seeks Partnerships with Vendors to Make Graduates Employable

Miami-based Catholic Barry University is tapping into college vendors to help make sure students are prepared to enter the job market once they graduate, reports Inside Higher Ed.

The University wants vendors to provide employment opportunities for students and will consider such offerings when considering bids for contracted services.

“We have a career center like everyone else that works with companies and develops relationships with companies, but we’ve never done much to connect the business side of the university with the academic side,” said Sara Herald, vice president for institutional advancement and external affairs, to Inside Higher Ed. “We’ve never had a dialogue about how they could help.

The move by Barry University, and other colleges reflects a change in career preparation based on an increasing number of graduates who are unable to find work during the economic downturn.

Some contractors already provide employment opportunities for students. Karen Cutler, spokeswoman for dining contractor Aramark, told Inside HIgher Ed:

While not required, we feel it is extremely valuable to offer student employment, career development and internship opportunities as part of our client partnerships. When we partner with a university, we make a commitment to the campus community well beyond just serving meals or cleaning/maintaining buildings and grounds. We see it as an opportunity to help students earn money and, more importantly, gain valuable work and leadership experience. Ultimately, we believe this as a great way to build our talent pipeline, and hope to encourage students to pursue a career in the hospitality field or (through our facilities partnerships) a career in engineering.

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