By Beverly Makhani, WSU Office of Undergraduate Education

PULLMAN, Washington – A new online career database called “Handshake” will go live July 1 for students and potential employers at Washington State University. It will replace the current “CougLink” system.

The new system, which will be used statewide, will give students and alumni access to job and internship offers from more than 100,000 recruiters, a 12-fold increase in that resource.

Employers will have access to creating an account and posting entries on Handshake, through which students can then review and apply.

The wide variety of offerings will include internships and full-time positions around the world, as well as part-time jobs on campus and in the surrounding community.

Better service everywhere

“We have put great effort into this upgrade and are confident that it will provide more efficient and better service to our student, alumni and employer customers,” said Terese King, Center for Academic Success and Careers director. The responsibilities of ASCC include the provision of career counseling services and the management of student employment. It is therefore essential to effectively connect job seekers with employers on and off campus.

“The students told us that CougLink was not user friendly enough for them,” King said. “We had to ask ourselves whether to renew our contract or look for a new solution. We have found that there are many innovative companies in the career relationship arena.

The decision to switch to Handshake

King said the center chose Handshake for a number of reasons, such as:

  • It offers a robust and user-friendly system.
  • It has a look and functionality similar to Facebook and Pinterest that works well on monitors, laptops and phones.
  • Several partners of PAC-12, Ivy League schools and the University of Idaho, University of Boise and University of Gonzaga use it.
  • It allows WSU users to access posts from over 120,000 employers, including a high percentage of Fortune 100 companies, which in turn introduces them to WSU as well.
  • Recruiters can target WSU candidates with posts, but publicly listed jobs are also on Handshake.
  • Students and alumni can easily create and update electronic / online portfolios featuring examples of their classroom and project work, evidence of writing and presentation skills, and even letters of recommendation.
  • Students can store multiple employer-specific CVs and cover letters, schedule campus interviews, and RSVP for career events.
  • Employers can search for qualified candidates, manage on-campus interviews, and register for career events online.
  • Data reporting should be more reliable with Handshake, which ASCC will use in assessments, for example.

Recover CougLink files until June

Until last fall, 9,511 students had used CougLink, signing in 182,347 times. It replaced a “JobX” career login system for job seekers in June 2014, when Student Employment moved to ASCC from Student Financial Services. Employers had used CougLink since at least 2005 to reach WSU prospects. Currently, there are 10,637 employers worldwide in the system.

Students and employers who currently use the CougLink system have until June 30 to retrieve and download any documents they wish to keep, said Christie Motley, ASCC deputy director in charge of career services and relations with employers.

“For students, these documents may include resumes and cover letters uploaded in response to a job or internship offer. Employers may want to copy job descriptions they have posted on CougLink, or applicants’ resumes for current or past jobs, ”Motley said.

According to Jordan Jameson, student employment coordinator, the ASCC Student Employment Webpage will contain the most recent information for all users.

Additional benefits of the handshake

“As a job portal, schedule manager and hub for career services, Handshake is quite forward-thinking and fresh,” King said. “We want to offer the best to our students and recruiters.

According to Garrett Lord, CEO and co-founder of Handshake, the company’s vision is “to help students have the data, content and communities they need to build meaningful careers, especially through better mobile products and innovative ways to use data. to help make career decisions.

Handshake began as a career services startup in 2014 when three Michigan Technological University students wanted to help others connect with more employers beyond the Midwest. Today, with millions of dollars invested by venture capitalists and 40 employees at its San Francisco headquarters, it serves more than 120,000 employers worldwide and 3.5 million students at 170 universities.

“Handshake says that at universities that use their product, students engage 50% more in career centers like ours,” Motley said. “ASCC is looking forward to the increase in business. “

Read about this and other opportunities at ASCC website.

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