Career Services at Chinese Universities-A Growth Occupation

I’ve been meaning to comment on this Chronicle article:  I thought it was difficult enough to work with 500 students at Hopkins-SAIS career services; now we see an awakening of a new career path for Chinese higher ed professionals in the career counseling field! Of course, they are having to deal with finding employment for 6.3 million college grads!

Actually, the campus offices are referred to as “employment-guidance” centers. The case study in this article describes the canter at Nankai University in Tianjin.  While the typical Western career services office employs a variety of coaching tools and a variety of service-delivery models, Nankai relies preponderantly on web-based tools.  In the last 4 months of 2011, the web site posted 30,000 job ads from 2,600 employers!

According to the HR director of a major staffing agency, Fesco, students “have no conception of what a job or a career means.”  This points to the legacy of “job allocation” rooted in the Communist system’s practices.  The idea of freedom of choice based upon assessment of student career aspirations may be a goal in the evolving profession of employment counseling, but, it’s  a long term one.

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