At Universities, a Push for Data-Driven Career Services

at The New York Times: “Officials at the University of California, San Diego, had sparse information on the career success of their graduates until they set up a branded page for the university on LinkedIn a couple of years ago.

“Back then, we had records on 125,000 alumni, but we had good employment information on less than 10,000 of them,” recalled Armin Afsahi, who oversees alumni relations as the university’s associate vice chancellor for advancement. “Aside from Qualcomm, which is in our back yard, we didn’t know who employed our alumni.”

Within three months of setting up the university page, LinkedIn connections surfaced information on 92,000 alumni, Mr. Afsahi said.

The LinkedIn page of University of California, San Diego.
The LinkedIn page of University of California, San Diego.Credit


“The old models of alumni relations don’t work,” Mr. Afsahi said. “We have to be a data-driven, intelligence-oriented organization to create the engagement and value” that students and alumni expect.

In an article on Sunday, I profiled two analytics start-ups, EverTrue and Graduway, which aim to help colleges and universities identify their best prospective donors or student mentors by scanning their graduates’ social networking activities. Each start-up taps into LinkedIn profiles of alumni — albeit in different ways — to help institutions of higher education stay up-to-date with their graduates’ contact information and careers.

Since 2013, however, LinkedIn has offered its own proprietary service, called University Pages, where schools can create hubs for alumni outreach and networking. About 25,000 institutions of higher learning around the world now have official university pages on the site…(More).”