We Need to Address College Central Network

by Catherine Arjet

opinions editor


It’s been almost a full academic year since the business office changed the way we apply to jobs here. While there were some kinks in the system initially, I assumed they would be worked out in the course of the year. However, one of the big ones — the forced use of College Central Network (CCN) and the problems this requirement causes — remains. I understand the need for standardization, and I’m sure it makes the bureaucracy run better if every application comes from a centralized site. However, I don’t know why that site has to be College Central Network.

CCN is probably one of the most user-unfriendly sites I’ve ever used; it looks and runs like it was designed in 2005 and never updated. I’ve had to teach more people than I can count how to actually find the application for a job, something that should be easy to find on a website designed to help us apply for jobs.

Once you find it, the application is just a two page form that’s standard to all on-campus jobs. While I find this annoying as a student, I’m sure it’s probably much more difficult for faculty and staff who cannot customize the application to the job to make sure they’re finding the best applicant. Instead, they have one application with just three spaces for prior work experience, which forces students to not list some relevant experiences. The space is cramped and there’s never enough to list more than a few words explaining the position you held and the tasks it entailed. While I understand that some students may find this easier than uploading a resume and cover letter, that would not only be good practice for when we apply to full time positions after we graduate, but it would give us a better way to showcase all of our skills and experiences. It also does not seem like it would be too much to ask of applicents since the career center will gladly work with students to make a professional-looking resume.

CCN is also filled with technological difficulties, from the PDF application never saving (which seems ridiculous and easy to fix) to it just not working sometimes. All of this makes it extremely hard to use, both for students looking for a job and for faculty and staff looking to hire students. I refuse to believe that this is the best our school can come up with. In the age of technology there must be a way that is much more beneficial to everyone involved.

Why does this matter? Millsaps is a network of poorly managed bureaucracies, so why write about this one? Student jobs are one of the most important functions of student life. For many of us, these jobs (help) pay tuition and ensure that we can return to Millsaps even when tuition continues to increase. If the school wants to increase retention, we need to make sure students can easily find and apply for jobs so that they can pay the bills. We simply cannot let this outdated system hold our students and our faculty back.