Advertising the EL Opportunity
Different kinds of EL will require different methods of connecting with students. Sometimes you will be connected with a student by your university partner, and other times you will need to conduct your own selection process through advertising and interviews. Your university partner will be able to advise you on what options you can pursue in finding EL students.
If you need to undertake a candidate search, approach it similar to how you might recruit a new employee. Write a description for the position or opportunity, leverage the communication channels provided by your university partner to advertise the posting, short-list student candidates and interview them.
However, keep in mind that selecting an EL student is not the same as hiring a new employee. There are important considerations to keep in mind as you write a posting for the opportunity, review candidates and interview them. You can access examples, best practices and guidelines for writing EL opportunity descriptions in the Templates and Examples page of our Resources section.
If you are advertising the opportunity through a posting, be sure to include these key elements in the description:
- Describe your organization and it’s work. This will give applicants a better sense of the culture and environment of your workplace, and attract them to the opportunities you offer.
- Outline the duties and responsibilities the opportunity will entail. EL is about applying classroom knowledge to a concrete experience. Outline the main functions of the role and how it will allow students to apply their learning toward more practical challenges and projects.
- Education. Indicate what academic programs might be most compatible with your organization and its needs, but do not be overly prescriptive. Consider students from a wide range programs, not just those that fit comfortably into your business needs or industry. Many students – particularly those in the arts, social sciences and humanities – will have a comprehensive and multidisciplinary skill set from their studies that are applicable to a variety of roles and industries.
- Experience: Since students have limited professional experience, consider other kinds of experience when reviewing candidates, such as part-time jobs, volunteerism, hobbies, student leadership roles and extra-curricular activities.
- Skills: Outline the specific skills required for the position. Include transferable skills (also known as soft skills) as well as any technical skills specific to your industry or the role. A list of Essential Employability Skills for graduates compiled by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities can help you determine what skills you may need.
- Outline opportunities for skills development: Include activities that students will engage in to build their skills, such as participating in a team project, presenting ideas to colleagues, planning a special event or working on a promotional campaign.
- Highlight opportunities for professional and personal development: Reference specific events, conferences, projects and other opportunities that will be available to increase students’ exposure to your field or industry and help them grow in their career path.