Campus recruitment is an important component of a successful long-term hiring strategy. Often a first step on the way to becoming a talent acquisition or human resources director or executive, campus recruiters wear many hats. The role requires a broad array of skills to attract, engage, screen, interview and place college students in internships or entry-level positions.

So what can you expect to make as a college recruiter in 2019?

Here’s a look at the responsibilities, salaries, and potential career paths for campus recruiters:

How much do campus recruiters make?

Based on data from Glassdoor, PayScale, and, most campus recruiters make between $60,162 and $80,172 a year. The average salary nationwide falls closer to $65,000 a year, with the high end reaching $87,000 annually and the low end bottoming out around $48,000.

Campus recruiters tend to earn above the national average in the country’s major metropolitan areas. Salaries in San Francisco are typically high due to greater opportunity in the tech sector, trending 26% higher than the national average. Regions with leading universities also trend higher than average, with campus recruiter salaries ranking 21% higher in New York, NY, 13.8% higher in Boston, MA, and 6.5% higher in Chicago, IL. Lower salaries are found in cities like Miami, ranking 2.5% below the national average, and Dallas, reporting a 0.7% drop.

Average Campus Recruiter Salary by City


New York
Los Angeles
San Antonio
San Diego
San Jose
Fort Worth
San Francisco
Washington, D.C.

Average 2019 Salary

*Source: Glassdoor

Factors that affect campus recruiter pay

A number of factors contribute to the overall pay for a campus recruiter, such as geography, experience, and additional compensation not included with a salary.

Like many careers, campus recruiter salaries tend to be higher in regions associated with a higher cost of living. Students and employers alike flock to cities like Boston and Chicago for access to world-class education and career opportunities; as such, salaries trend higher in major cities.

Experience also has a significant effect on salary of a campus recruiter. In Michigan, for instance, the average campus recruiter salary is $69,991, with a range falling between $60,763 and $80,973. New recruiters should expect to make closer to the lower end of the scale.

The pay structure can also have a significant impact on the annual salary of a campus recruiter. PayScale reports an annual campus recruiter salary of $60,485, but the average hourly wage is $20.02. Assuming a campus recruiter works 40 hours a week — what a dream! — the hourly wage translates to less than $40,000 a year.

The pay discrepancy can be attributed to additional income through bonuses, commissions, and profit sharing. PayScale reports campus recruiters nationwide tend to earn an average of $3,192 in bonus pay, $6,000 in commission, and $2,966 in profit sharing.

How to become a campus recruiter

Getting hired as a campus recruiter typically requires a bachelor’s degree in human resources, business, or another related field. Campus recruiting generally does not require a master’s degree, but advanced degrees may be useful to obtain HR leadership positions later in your career.

You should also possess certain soft skills like strong organization, listening and relationship-building abilities. Real-world work experience can help you build the business acumen needed to thrive in this role. To stay up to date and have an advantage over the competition, it helps to get certification from nationally recognized organizations like the Society for Human Resources Management (SHRM).

Job requirements for campus recruiters

Job requirements for campus recruiters can be quite varied depending on the specific organization’s needs. Generally, college recruiters identify and recruit students and recent university graduates for job openings and internship opportunities. As part of a company’s HR or recruitment team, campus recruiters work year-round to plan and execute recruitment strategies to identify qualified candidates before, during, and after the academic year.

Throughout the year, campus recruiters work with hiring managers to identify open roles for the next year and define job responsibilities. They visit college campuses to meet with students and identify top talent for opportunities upon graduation. Campus recruiters are heavily involved in planning recruitment marketing events, like employer information sessions, to attract interested talent and raise awareness of their company’s employer brand.

Campus recruiter job description

What roles and responsibilities are usually included in a campus recruiter job description? Here’s what you might find:

We’re looking for someone with:

  • 2+ years as a recruiter or similar HR role
  • Candidate interview experience
  • Hands-on experience with candidate sourcing databases and Applicant Tracking Systems
  • Familiarity with recruitment marketing techniques
  • Good networking skills
  • Bachelor’s degree in human resources or other relevant field
  • Ability to travel at least 6 months of the year

How you’ll make an impact:

  • Define and execute the organization’s campus recruitment process
  • Recruit college students and recent graduates for internships and job opportunities post-graduation
  • Work with hiring managers to understand hiring needs, open roles and job responsibilities
  • Foster strong relationships with the career center on university campuses
  • Attend college career fairs, interacting with students and sourcing potential candidates
  • Host on-campus information sessions to promote our employer brand
  • Screen resumes, conduct interviews and perform skills assessment tests
  • Identify opportunities to improve and optimize our hiring process