Many of the international students are used to the concept of Campus placements or on-campus recruitment for getting Jobs, especially in counties like India. It does not exactly work the same way in America. We focus on some facts about campus placements in USA universities.
If you were to ask anyone in a typical US university, they would be wondering about the term “placement” as they are not used to it much. Many call it On-campus recruitment. Every US University has something called a Career Services Center, which will focus on helping you getting jobs, help you prepare for interviews, etc.
In a typical campus placement in India, there would be common exam conducted to about 500 or all students in a College and they pick the top 10% or 5%. But, recruitment works differently in US. Firstly, they would NEVER conduct a mass recruitment like what happens in India by conducting a general test. Secondly, it is always driven by student interest. Most of the times, companies that recruit through the university do NOT offer a job directly, rather they will offer you an internship or co-op. Companies would like to see you work for few weeks or months before they hire you full time. It is a great concept, because they get to see your work and you get a chance to prove yourself as well.
In general, top schools have tie-ups with fortune 500 companies. The University Career Center typically arrange something called a Career Fair, where you would get a chance to drop off your resume at a company’s recruitment booth and understand about the company. Some time, they will do on the spot recruitment and offer internships…if not, they will reach out to you at later point of time. As a student, it is your responsibility to check and follow up with the recruitment teams.
Also, Career centers would have an internal job portal. You may need to pay some extra money to join that…But, the advantage is that you get to apply to jobs posted there by company recruiters. Some companies prefer to talk to students in person and then recruit, so they will circulate the job or internship by an internal posting and subsequently they will schedule interviews on –campus and then recruit you for an internship or job at times
They key take away is that, there is no mass recruitment that you imagine in your home country. You need to work with the Career Services to get any jobs or internships. Getting an internship or co-op is pretty much your opportunity to get a full time job and find your H1B Sponsor. Also, going to a top school does not guarantee a job in US, you need to do your home work to get the internship. Depending on the school, each department will have its own career services center and one mega one for the whole university. You should work with your department career center and then go to the University common career center.
If you do not know, as the name say they focus on doing many things related to career advancement. This is not universal, but here are typical functions of Career Services:
The overall point we are trying to say is, many students do not realize the importance of the Career Services. They will help you in a variety of ways. Just check them out and learn. In fact, you are paying for all these services in your differential tuition and as a student if you do not use them, you are just throwing your money in water.