Meghan Stidd, firstname.lastname@example.org, Assistant Dean, External Relations
Mark Paquette, Principal Program Coordinator
The College of Business Career Development Center strives to connect with as many employers as possible to increase the number of opportunities available to students. With limited staff and resources, the Career Development Center did not have an effective employer vetting process to ensure these opportunities are appropriate for students.
To address this issue, the Career Development Center partnered with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) of Southern Colorado. The BBB now fully vets all new employers wanting to recruit through the Career Development Center. Prior to the partnership, nearly 100% of employer internship and job postings were approved. After the partnership, 10% of postings have been denied for a wide-range of concerning reasons to include unethical business practices, lack of proper filings with the state or federal government, and suspension of certifications or licensure. The revised employer vetting process has improved the quality of postings marketed to students, limited the risk to students, and reduced the University's liability with no additional funding or manpower needed.
The concern with the prior employer vetting process was the lack of screening required and the risk of students securing internship and employment opportunities from unethical or unlawful employers. The prior employer vetting process placed the burden of ensuring employer quality on the student. Realizing that students typically lack the knowledge and/or resources to complete a comprehensive evaluation of potential employers, to include criminal background checks, the Career Development Center quickly determined that the College should carry the majority of the burden in the process. Student safety is top priority for the College and the new process reflects that.
The need for the process was identified in early 2017. Discussions with the Better Business Bureau and an initial process was implemented later that year. The process has been improved and enhanced since the initial implementation. Currently, the vetting process is expanding to be implemented as the standard for employer vetting across the UCCS campus. The process was highlighted as a best practice during a conference presentation at the Cooperative Education and Internship Association Annual Conference in April 2019. Universities across the nation are looking to this model as one to emulate.