Colleges with the Best Career Centers

While students seek different things from their college experience, it is generally agreed that the most important thing that a college can do is prepare one for a career in the real world. Students struggle through tests, exams, readings, and long, stressful nights with only coffee for company, all to someday graduate and take a comfortable position at a well-paying and satisfying job. Some colleges go about this process differently, with some preferring to leave it to individual students to find career counseling. On the other hand, schools with pristine career centers pride themselves on their ability to assist students with their goals and, subsequently, place them in the workforce. Here’s a quick run-through of schools with excellent career centers, and how they can help you accomplish your dreams:

The University of Texas at Austin

Flickr user Kumar Appaiah

Flickr user Kumar Appaiah

Location: Austin, TX

When students go to a so-called “big” school, especially one, like UT Austin, with an enrollment of over 50,000, there is sometimes concern that they could be “lost” among their peers. It logically would make sense that the more students a university has to assist, the less each individual student is focused upon. However, schools like UT Austin have proven this conception to be misguided.

Even with their massive student body and overwhelming size, the school still manages to provide each student who seeks career counseling with help. Unlike some schools with a brick-and-mortar career center, UT Austin brings their job placement program into the 21st century through their RecruitUT online network, which “connects students and alumni with recruiters seeking top talent from The University of Texas at Austin for career, job and internship positions.” Within their wide-ranging alumni network, UT Austin graduates will always give an ear to a fellow Longhorn. The use of the RecruitUT program helps give UT Austin one of the highest job placement rates in the nation.

Pennsylvania State University

Flickr user Penn State

Flickr user Penn State

Location: State College, PA (main)

In addition to their flagship campus in State College, PA, Pennsylvania State University has 24 campuses scattered across the Keystone State. While people generally think of the State College campus when thinking of Penn State, their traditions and reputation as a brilliant school for career placement follows them all over the state. Nearly 98,000 students are currently being educated in the Penn State system, each with a goal of someday graduating and working their dream job. Penn State’s schools have many premium programs, but they are perhaps best known for their law school, ranked among the best in the nation.

Their eponymous Penn State Law school, located on their University Park campus in State College, has one of the better career programs in the nation, placing their law grads with jobs quickly and effectively. According to 2015 data, almost 70% of Penn State Law students were working at a secure, long-term job within ten months of graduation, an outstanding rate. Penn State Law’s twin school, Dickinson Law, is located at the school’s Harrisburg campus, and has an even higher placement rate for recent grads, at 79%. Penn State’s law schools take care of their students in college and, when they’re ready to step into their lives, provide a path to employment.

University of Notre Dame

Flickr user Mariano Martel

Flickr user Mariano Martel

Location: South Bend, IN

The mythology and culture of the sprawling University of Notre Dame echoes far beyond their campus on the shores of Indiana, from their vast alumni network to the pride that fans of the “Fighting Irish” feel when rooting on their sports teams. Notre Dame’s career center, located in Flanner Hall, provides students with links and connections to job opportunities, as well as fostering the skills they will need in the “real world,” through practical stock presentations and mock job interviews.

As one of the most prestigious religiously affiliated universities in the country, through the Catholic Church, Notre Dame has the double advantage of using both their Fighting Irish alumni network and the Catholic network of professionals around the country. Notre Dame’s GO IRISH database centralizes and streamlines career options for ND students, so they can browse job opportunities from the comfort of their couch. ND has one of the highest job placement rates in the nation, with over 60% of their students having a job lined up before they even graduate.

Northeastern University

Flickr user Wally Gobetz

Flickr user Wally Gobetz

Location: Boston, MA

Smack-dab in the middle of the collegiate hub that is the city of Boston, Northeastern University is renowned nationally for their academic programs, including their School of Engineering. Consistently ranked among the best in the nation, the School of Engineering, home to about 3,000 undergraduate students, is known for their precise attention to detail and focus on each individual student’s curriculum. Because of this spotlight placed on each student, engineers at Northeastern are given great resources towards their future careers, based in their lauded cooperative education program, or “Co-op.”

Based on the idea that college should be equal parts practical experience and theoretical learning, these co-ops provide students with research opportunities. Through the co-ops, students foster connections with Northeastern’s vast alumni network, as well as the myriad of engineering graduates that make their home in Boston or the northeast corridor. The job opportunities stemming from Northeastern have received national attention, with the Princeton Review awarding them the #1 spot in the “career development” category four times over the past decade. 92% of Northeastern students, following graduation, were either enrolled in grad school or fully employed within ten months of graduation, an astoundingly high number.

Interested in any of these schools? Use College Raptor’s free match tool to discover if they’re a good fit for you!


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