As the Student Placement Office gathered momentum rolling into its third year of operation, director John W. Teele yesterday estimated that he and his staff of five have helped over 1000 University graduates to find their niches in the wide, cruel world.
Founded in October, 1945, to meet an increasing number of student pleas for job assistance, the Weld Hall burean now boasts a file of 240 letters from financial, industrial, and labor relations leaders.
With better than 35 percent of the past two senior classes plus a smattering of pre-1945 graduates, taking advantage of the placement office's facilities, Teele has only two letters from applicants showing dissatisfaction in their present jobs.
"One of those men wants to write poetry and be supported while he is at it. The other . . . , Teele signed, "the other is selling typewriters."
Bosses Problems Too
In spite of this impressive record, Teele and his assistants have their troubles, both with employers and prospective employees.
Many employers feel that there should not be any placement problem at the University, for, as a representative of Proctor and Gamble told Teele, "All boys at Harvard have openings in their fathers' concerns." Last year's poll of the College, however, showed that only five percent of the undergraduates awaited such soft touches, but Teele has a hard time convincing the bosses.
Teele asserts his biggest difficulty with students is their fastidiousness. "Harvard graduates want polite jobs," he says: "They don't want to get their hands dirty and that's where they make their big mistake."
Office Attempts Rebuttal
In an attempt to deny this fact, the bureau last year found seven students who claimed they wouldn't mind any amount of grime for a good job. They were sent to a factory in Lowell which offered quick advancement. The promotions were not forthcoming at the end of the week, but it didn't make any difference since none of the seven had stuck it out that long.
Placements in the technical fields are the easiest for the office these days, with openings in salesmanship running a close second. Worst bets are employment in publishing, journalism, and advertising. The majority are disappointed because of their wide popularity and comparatively limited number of vacancies.
1 of 5 Gets Direct Job
Since the largest corporations are all that can afford any kind of a recruiting program and only one out of five College graduates work for these big-name out-fits, the placement bureau's task does not consist simply of direct references.
Most applicants receive aid in two different directions: (1) counsel in the kind of employment desired and (2) planning a job campaign.
In a pamphlet distributed last year, the office advised solicitors of its services, "You must make the chief contribution to this situation or we cannot help you. Neither can anyone else!"