University News

Revamped Jobzle attracts local students

By
Contributing Writer
Thursday, September 30, 2010

Jobzle, a job-search website created by Brown students that “enables employers to easily hire college students for part-time jobs and internships” launched a new version of its program Sept. 15.

Jobzle was founded by Walker Williams ’11. According to Jobzle’s lead engineer Evan Stites-Clayton ’11, Williams created Jobzle because he realized it was hard for him to find a job as a student, and there was nothing established to help students with this specific problem.

Williams decided to fill this void and Jobzle originally launched in September 2009. The company has undergone a transformation and is being built again “from the ground up” to make the site more user-friendly and efficient, Stites-Clayton said.

Now, Jobzle is “trying to make an umbrella company that will allow a company to come to one website and post to all college students in Rhode Island,” Stites-Clayton said. Jobzle is focusing on Rhode Island college students and jobs because the site wants to focus on quality rather than quantity. “Density is important,” Stites-Clayton said.

As of last week, Jobzle’s website already had more than 16,000 hits and was on target to have 1,000 students signed up in the Providence area by the end of the week.

The Betaspring startup accelerator program has invested in Jobzle, as have other local companies. The Rhode Island Tech Collective helped Jobzle make contact with companies like Hasbro, GTECH and Atrion Networking.

JoAnn Johnson, manager of youth and education programs at the Rhode Island Tech Collective, said the collective was interested in investing in Jobzle because there has been a “man shortage” in Rhode Island, especially in information technology. Johnson said that the Tech Collective is interested in retaining Rhode Island college students in the state as employees after they finish their degrees. She said that Jobzle and the Tech Collective are “both fitting each others’ needs.”

Kathie Shields, executive director of the Tech Collective, called the loss of graduated college students to other states the “brain drain.” Shields said companies like Tech Collective and its members are working to reduce this by encouraging local business to tap into the talent and resources available in Providence and the rest of Rhode Island.