Initiative seeks to connect university talent to the region’s business community
Baton Rouge, La. (October 13, 2021) – The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) today released a progress report on the organization’s partnership with LSU and Southern University to retain graduates in the region by connecting students to local career opportunities through the Handshake platform. The report card is available online at brac.org/research.
“In almost every meeting with businesses this year, talent is everyone’s biggest concern,” said Adam Knapp, president and CEO of BRAC. “When we sat down with LSU and Southern a year ago, our joint goal was increasing business use of Handshake and students’ usage of the app. The more jobs that local businesses post, the more likely students find interesting jobs in this region during and after college. We wanted our partnership to be data-driven, which we are able to show with this report. Every business in the Capital Region should be taking advantage of this platform by activating a free employer account and hiring their interns and entry level employees through it.”
Key takeaways from the first year of data include:
- Between September 2020 and September 2021, employer account activation increased 27.4%;
- Job postings at LSU increased by 4,130% and at Southern by 57%;
- The highest concentration of jobs posted on the LSU system were in construction, oil & gas, and staffing and recruiting, whereas the highest concentration of jobs posted on the Southern system were in government, non-profit, and healthcare;
- 54.7% of all LSU undergrads have an active profile, while 16% of Southern undergrads have an active profile;
- As of September 2021, the top three colleges by activation rate at LSU are College of Coast and Environment (70%), College of Agriculture (66%), and Manship School of Mass Communication (63%);
- As of September 2021, the top three colleges by activation rate at Southern are College of Science and Engineering (29%), College of Agriculture, Family and Consumer Sciences (27%), and College of Business (21%).
Since the initial partnership announcement with LSU and Southern in September of 2020, BRAC facilitated transitioning the LCTCS system and FranU onto the Handshake platform, making the Capital Region the only metro in the country with all traditional four-year and two-year institutions aligned behind a single recruitment platform. Future BRAC reporting will include data across all campuses.
Key priorities going into 2022 include driving greater student activation across campuses and individual colleges, and educating employers to activate recruiting at all available regional institutions.
Regional businesses are encouraged to create a free employer account on Handshake, and utilize the system for recruiting interns and entry level employees from all of the region’s higher education institutions. Employers can post jobs for free, and browse on-campus career events and interview opportunities. More information about Handshake, resources for creating internship programs, and BRAC services related to talent attraction and retention are available at brac.org/handshake.
About the Baton Rouge Area Chamber
The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) leads economic development in the nine-parish Baton Rouge Area, working to grow jobs and wealth and to improve the business climate and competitiveness in the region. Today, BRAC investors include more than 1,400 small businesses, mid-sized firms, large industry and entrepreneurial startups, as well as individuals and organizations that support business and economic development. In this capacity, BRAC serves as the voice of the business community, providing knowledge, access, services and advocacy. More information is available at brac.org.