Big State Universities Favored by Corporate Recruiters

September 15, 2010

Companies prefer to recruit new hires at big state universities – not at the prestigious Ivy League, according to a new survey by the Wall Street Journal.  As reported in the WSJ, “State universities have become the favorite of companies recruiting new hires because their big student populations and focus on teaching practical skills gives the companies more bang for their recruiting buck.”

Under pressure to manage costs and streamline hiring efforts, recruiting managers find it’s more productive to focus on fewer large schools and build deeper relationships with them, according to the WSJ survey of recruiters whose companies last year hired 43,000 new graduates.

Big state schools Pennsylvania State University, Texas A&M University and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign were the top three picks among the recruiters surveyed by the WSJ.

The only Ivy in the top 25 was Cornell (the largest of the Ivy League schools) at No. 14.

The WSJ reported that recruiters find that graduates of top public universities are often among the most prepared and well-rounded academically, and that they fit well into their corporate cultures and over time have the best track record in their firms.

The Top 10

1. Penn State

2. Texas A&M

3. University of Illinois

4. Purdue

5. Arizona State

6. University of Michigan

7. Georgia Tech

8. University of Maryland

9. University of Florida

10. Carnegie Mellon

While recruiters  didn’t rate Ivy League grads best overall, several did favor them in some specific majors.   Stanford University, for example, was ranked 11th in engineering recruits and 16th in business/economics.  Harvard ranked 4th in business and economics.

The article and list is available on the WSJ web site:


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About Lynn Lubell

Lynn Radlauer Lubell is the Publisher of, an internationally renowned website for college-bound students, parents and guidance counselors, and the Founder of Admission by Design, an educational consultancy.

A graduate of MIT and Harvard Business School, Lynn is a professional member of IECA and a member of HECA.  She has broad expertise in college admission strategy and planning.

Lynn served on the MIT Educational Council for ten years interviewing hundreds of undergraduate applicants.

Based in Boca Raton, Florida, Admission by Design, consults with students and families in South Florida and beyond.

Biography - Lynn Lubell