Higher-education job site takes on critical role in down economy

More than 4,700 colleges and universities posted jobs on HigherEdJobs last year.

The growth of community college job openings is leveling off, adjunct faculty positions have grown at a steady pace since the economic recession of 2008, and campus job advertisements are on the rise, according to the latest statistics from HigherEdJobs.com.

The comprehensive higher-education jobs site recently teamed up with eCampus News in a partnership that will help administrators, instructors, professors, and technologists looking for their next calling at colleges and universities of every size.

Through the partnership, eCampus News will host some of the site’s latest job listings in a new online resource center. To access these listings, go to http://ecampusnews.eschoolmedia.com/higher-ed-jobs/ or click on the “HigherEdJobs” option under the “Resources” tab at the top of our website.

The college job market was not hit nearly as hard as other sectors during and immediately after the recession spurred by the meltdown of the housing market, said Andrew Hibel, CEO and cofounder of HigherEdJobs, which was launched in 1996 and receives about 2.5 million visits every month.

More than 4,700 colleges and universities posted more than 97,920 job openings on HigherEdJobs in 2011.

The “market share” of higher-education jobs compared to all U.S. jobs continued to expand in the fourth quarter of 2011, and the hiring of part-time employees is once again on the rise after moderating in 2010, according to the HigherEdJobs quarterly report.

After some panic among college professionals in the darkest days of the economic downturn, Hibel said, campus decision makers saw hiring opportunities rally and continued posting openings to the HigherEdJobs site, which was created in large part because campuses only advertised a small percentage of job openings in the 1990s because print ads proved pricey.

“A lot of people thought the world was coming apart pretty fast,” Hibel said, referring to the first half of 2009. “We wanted to reassure people that the industry is still very, very strong, despite the economy. But we knew people wanted to think more critically about their careers when the economy went south, and we take that data quite seriously.”

That led to the launch of HigherEdJobs’ “Author in Residence,” a monthly blog written by higher-education employees with statistical and anecdotal advice on how best to transition from one school to another, or land a job after months of unemployment and underemployment.