by Megan Jewell

Having recently graduated from college, I am familiar with the post-college frantic job hunt combined with being thrust into the “reality of life” that one seems protected from at college. That is why I was intrigued by the headline on the Business Weekly website reporting that 2005 grads are entertaining more job offers than graduates in the recent past. I decided to look further into this trend. I encourage those of you located within the vicinity of a college or university to read further and think about how you might be able to market that resource.

According to a study of 582 companies conducted by the Collegiate Employment Research Institute at Michigan State University, companies plan to expand the hiring of grads by 20% over last year. The study reveals that average pay may rise as much as 4-7% for graduates as well. Young workers tend to spend this extra pay on recreational activities and a higher quality of life, benefiting the local economy. The study also showed that the increase in hiring is not narrowed to a few industries; the range includes such businesses as investment banking, retail, health care, and real estate.

Why are companies heading to campus? Many companies are finding they cannot continue holding off hiring for jobs left empty through attrition. With the forecast of economic growth and more demand, companies are finding they need a larger workforce to support the work load.

“Add to that the expectation that Baby Boomers will start to retire in a few years,” says Phil Garner, author of the Michigan State survey, “and companies have a human-resource gap to fill.”

Some specific companies that have begun the process of hiring graduates include eBay, Dell computer, Johnson & Johnson, Proctor & Gamble, as well as many others.

So what does this mean for your community? If you have the availability of a university or college within your area, use this to your advantage. Companies who are looking to hire graduates, and coincidentally looking to relocate or expand may be very interested in moving to a location near a university for access to the talent. Marketing this asset can only improve the likelihood of a company’s willingness to invest in your area.

For a more in-depth look at the companies hiring please go to

For a look at the article “For 2005 Grads, Job Offers Are Rolling In,” by Jennifer Merritt please visit