Tuesday, February 19, 2008
23 colleges, universities partner to attract, retain talent
Twenty-three public and private Michigan colleges and universities, including Oakland University, have banded together to launch the Michigan Higher Education Recruitment Consortium (HERC) to share information and resources to attract and retain talented faculty and staff.
The three University Research Corridor presidents, University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman, Michigan State University President Lou Anna Simon and Wayne State University President Irvin D. Reid jointly invited the state’s other public and private colleges and universities to form the Michigan HERC.
“Working together makes it easier for us to keep the best workers in the state and to attract new talent to the state,’’ said Michigan HERC Executive Director Linda Berauer. “Regions known for their large pools of knowledge workers already have similar organizations and this will make Michigan’s colleges and universities more competitive.’’
After an organizational meeting at MSU last spring, the group quickly set up a dues structure and grew to 23 public and private colleges and universities of all sizes. HERC recently hired an administrator and launched a Web site connecting their job opportunities together.
With a growing number of two income couples, human resource staffers often struggle when they pursue a talented worker whose spouse is in a field where they might not have an opening. Often they need to look to other potential employers within the region.
The consortium is designed to make it easier to recruit or retain talented faculty and staff by helping spouses find openings at nearby universities within the same region, to create networking opportunities and share best practices among member institutions through regular meetings, and to reduce costs through joint purchasing arrangements.
The Michigan HERC institutions are: Alma College, Central Michigan University, College for Creative Studies, Concordia University, Cornerstone University, Davenport University, Delta College, Eastern Michigan University, Ferris State University, Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Valley State University, Henry Ford Community College, MSU, Mott Community College, Oakland Community College, Oakland University, University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, University of Michigan -Dearborn, University of Michigan -Flint, Washtenaw Community College, Wayne County Community College District, Wayne State and Western Michigan University.
The first HERC began in northern California, the home of Silicon Valley, in 2000 and now includes 46 member institutions. There are now HERCs in other competitive areas where the hunt for talent is at a premium including southern California, metro New York/southern Connecticut, New Jersey, upstate New York and New England. HERCs area also planned for the Chicago region and metro St. Louis. Plans are underway to create a national HERC that will establish itself as an independent non-profit organization and provide services to all the regional HERCs.