The state’s largest network of universities announced a deal Monday to help more than 92,000 students at the nine-college University of Louisiana System have an easier time finding jobs upon graduation.
The University of Louisiana System’s partnership with MyEdu, of Austin, Texas, also is billed as a way for students to stay on track with their schoolwork, shorten their time to graduation and find internships.
Since 2010, MyEdu has been working with universities and collecting data to help students develop personal education plans.
The company uses a social media platform similar to LinkedIn to give students one place where they can plan their school schedules, build a degree “road map” and keep track of their progress as they move closer toward graduation.
The company got its initial boost through a $10 million investment from the University of Texas system.
Since then, it’s gotten mixed reviews on the University of Texas-Austin campus with the school’s newspaper calling on the company to “go back to the drawing board,” for not bringing anything new to the table.
UL System President Sandra Woodley, a former administrator in the UT system, said MyEdu’s benefit is it will help students focus on their career path earlier than they typically would.
And, unlike the deal in Texas, the University of Louisiana System is getting the service for free, she said.
MyEdu founder Michael Crosno told the UL System Board of Supervisors that his company has worked with more 800 colleges and universities since its inception and has roughly 1.2 million users.
“We create a jobs marketplace, kind of like eBay. It connects jobs to the students,” Crosno said. “The jobs are pushed to students ... If you are a nursing student, you will only see nursing jobs.”
Students using the system essentially create a digital profile as they progress through school with MyEdu keeping track of the skills they acquire in public speaking courses, marketing classes and debate workshops, for example.
From there, employers who pay to use the MyEdu service can punch in the skills they are looking for in potential employees and be directed to the students who meet their needs.
The UL System’s student board member, Davante Earl-Damon Lewis, said he’s been using the service for about a week. He said the service acts like a virtual résumé but less generic than the paper version.
“This showcases your skills,” he said. “You can use this to market yourself.”