Recruitment at UC San Diego FAQS for Employers

What services do you provide employers?

UC San Diego’s Career Center works closely with employers to meet hiring needs, post-employment opportunities, participate in our quarterly Triton Career Fairs, conduct interviews with pre-screened candidates on campus, host an information session, advertise in print publications, or connect directly with student organizations. Employers are also invited to join the Triton Alliance, our signature partner program that helps companies elevate their recruitment and involvement with the university.

How do I let UC San Diego students and alumni know of job or internship opportunities?

The best way to promote employment opportunities is to post it on Handshake, a centralized online employment board accessed by over 20,000 active UC San Diego students and alumni users. There are over 900 universities and over 400,000 employers use Handshake to reach college talent across the nation. See tips below on how to use Handshake.

What are your policies for employers posting employment opportunities?

Do you offer services to third-party recruiters? What are your policies for third-party recruiters?

The Career Center defines third-party recruiters as agencies, organizations, or individuals recruiting candidates for temporary, part-time, or full-time employment opportunities for other organizations rather than for internal positions. This includes entities that make referrals or recruit for profit or not for profit, and it includes agencies that collect student information to be disclosed to employers for purposes of recruitment and employment. Examples are employment agencies, search firms, contract recruiters, venture capital firms acting on behalf of their portfolio companies, and online job posting or resume referral services. See more at National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) NACE Principles for Professional Practice.

Third party recruiters may utilize Career Center job listing services, participate in on-campus recruiting and attend select career fairs. However, third party recruiters will be required to verify in advance in writing whether they are recruiting for their own organizations or for their clients that has hired them for recruitment. Third-party firms who are recruiting for positions within their own organizations must clearly differentiate those opportunities from their client engagements. Failure to abide by these third-party requirements will result in loss of access to Career Center services.

Third-party recruiters may take advantage of services and other events sponsored by UC San Diego Career Center, provided they:

  • Identify themselves as a third-party recruiter with signage at events, on their employer profile and on all job announcements.
  • Charge no fees to the candidate for any service or product or soliciting candidates to buy their product or service.
  • Identify, upon request, the name of the employer they represent and permit verification of this information.
  • Provide accurate position descriptions and include specific client names in all jobs posted on Handshake.
  • In accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, release candidate information provided by the University exclusively and only to the identified employer. Re-disclosure of candidate information is not permitted.

How can startup companies recruit at UC San Diego?

The Career Center has established these criteria for identifying appropriate entrepreneurial employment opportunities for promotion through its services. Start-ups must have progressed sufficiently in their business development process so that they can:

  • Provide a company name, business address, website and email address, and identify a principal as the key contact;
  • Verify that they are not seeking potential partners or investors;
  • Confirm that they have obtained the necessary business licenses and Tax ID’s as well as sufficient funding, including identifying their funding model and investors, if requested;
  • Provide clearly defined organization and position descriptions in Handshake.
  • Those ventures who cannot meet these guidelines may contact the Career Center at a later stage to discuss access to services.

Should I classify my position as an internship? What are your guidelines for internships, especially if unpaid?

As defined by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) , an internship is a form of experiential learning that integrates knowledge and theory learned in the classroom with practical application and skills development in a professional setting. Internships give students the opportunity to gain valuable applied experience and make connections in professional fields they are considering for career paths, while giving employers the opportunity to guide and evaluate talent. Internships are learning-based opportunities that assist with career skill development and include a training component. Internship positions can be part-time or full-time, and paid or unpaid.

For paid internships, employer are expected to follow the Fair Labor Standard Act For unpaid internships, the legal considerations are addressed through six criteria for unpaid interns for the service they provide to “for-profit” private sector employers articulated in the Fair Labor Standards Act If the six criteria are met, the Department of Labor (DOL) considers there to be no employment relationship. The six criteria established by the DOL are:

  1. The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the employer’s facilities, is similar to training that would be given in a vocational school.
  2. The internship experience is for the benefit of the student.
  3. The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under the close observation of a regular employee.
  4. The employer provides the training and derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern. Occasionally, the operations may actually be impeded.
  5. The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship.
  6. The employer and the intern understand that the intern is not entitled to wages for the time in the internship.

Academic credit can be offered for unpaid internships. Students are advised to contact UC San Diego’s Academic Internship Program (AIP) to obtain pre-approval.

General Policies and Guidelines

By acting in accordance with these policies and guidelines, individuals and organizations can help the Career Center maintain a professional, fair and successful recruiting environment for all parties concerned.

  • UC San Diego’s Career Center serves employers that offer bona fide full-time, part-time, internship, volunteer, or fellowship positions to students and UC alumni. All employers must adhere to Equal Employment Opportunity guidelines, NACE Guidelines for Professional Practice (NACE) NACE Principles for Professional Practice, and UC San Diego's Offer and Acceptance Guidelines outlined below. For accounting firms, please also refer to the Accounting Recruitment Calendar. Employers are prohibited from posting positions that request donations, non-refundable fees, investments or have items or services for sale.
  • We reserve the right to refuse service to employers at the discretion of the Career Center’s Executive Director due to any objectionable activities, including, but not limited to: requiring at the time of application personal information such as bank and social security numbers; misrepresentation by dishonest information or absence of information; student complaints; fraud; failure to adhere to UC San Diego’s Career Center policies, or any violation of University of California, local, state, or federal laws.
  • Employers with commission-based or franchise opportunities may take advantage of all employer services and events, provided they:
      • Disclose that compensation is based partially or solely on commission.
      • Do not require payment of non-refundable fees for training and/or materials.
      • Do not require that any part of the compensation be associated with recruiting others.
      • Disclose the opportunity is running one's own business through a franchise.
      • Do not charge penalties, fees or withhold earnings if the franchisee leaves the program.
  • On-campus interviewing is a service that may be utilized by employers recruiting for full-time positions (career, internship, summer) only, and is not available for organizations seeking candidates for part-time opportunities.
  • If you are looking to consider non-US/International and students that require work authorization, please see our new Employing an International Student Guide.

Handshake at UC San Diego FAQ for Employers

How do I use Handshake, the online employment platform to recruit UC San Diego student and alumni talent?

  1. Create a user account. You will need a user account to log in and use Handshake. If you've received an invite from a school or a colleague, you can follow the link to take you to the account creation process. To create an employer account without using an invite, go to
  2. Join your existing company on Handshake or create a new one. Once you’ve created a user account, you will need to be connected to your company profile on Handshake prior to taking any actions with schools. Your company should appear based on the domain of your email address, if it is already in Handshake. If it isn't, you should see the option to create a new company profile.
  3. Request to connect with schools. You must request and receive approval from a school prior to posting jobs on Handshake. You can select schools during your sign-up process, and can add additional schools later. To add a school on Handshake:
    • Log in to Handshake.
    • Go to the “Relationships” category on the left navigation bar and select “Schools.”
    • Select “+Add More Schools” above your list of schools.
    • Click “(+)” next to each school you’d like to add
    • You’ll receive a notification of approval once the school has approved your account.
  1. We approve employer registrations and job/internship postings throughout the day.

I registered for an employer account at UC San Diego. When will it be approved?

Typically, the approval process takes 1-2 business days. If the registration is incomplete (e.g., failure to provide any of the following: web address, personal email domain that’s used instead of your company email, description, address etc.), there can be a delay in approval.

I’m trying to add UC San Diego as a school, but I can’t find it in Handshake. What should I do?

We are listed as “University of California, San Diego.” Try typing “San Diego” to help narrow your search.

How do I create an employment posting?

Log into Handshake and select “Post a Job” on the homepage. Complete the necessary information and select “Create” to finish. For more job posting questions, visit Handshake’s Help Center.

How do I request on-campus interview dates?

Log into Handshake and select “Request an Interview” on the homepage. Complete the necessary information and select “Request.” Our Industry Engagement team will follow up with you if needed. For more on-campus interview questions, visit Handshake’s Help Center.

How do I book an information session?

Log into Handshake and select “Create an Event” on the homepage. Complete the necessary information and select “Save.” Our Industry Engagement team will follow-up with you to finalize logistics. For more information session questions, please visit Handshake’s Help Center.

How could my Handshake Trust Score effect my ability to recruit student and alumni talent?

UC San Diego policies and practices look to identify and prevent fraudulent and nefarious employment postings. In concert with other universities, UC San Diego requires all employers to have a Handshake verified trust score of 80% or above as a safeguard to prevent fraudulent postings.  If you employer trust score is under 80%, please contact the Career Center and we can work to find a solution.

Handshake policies

The Handshake system is the web-based portal for publicizing all bona fide full-time, part-time, seasonal, and short-term positions and other recruiting activities for small and large businesses, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, on-campus employers, households, and individuals. All recruiting organizations or individuals are expected to accurately describe their organizations, positions and position requirements when posting their information on Handshake or when representing their firms and opportunities at any campus recruiting events. Postings requiring donations, application fees, or investments or offering items or services for sale cannot be advertised on Handshake.

Triton Alliance Employer Partner Program at UC San Diego

What is Triton Alliance?

We established the Triton Alliance to recognize employers who support our innovative programs and initiatives, and who invest in the professional development of our students and alumni. A partnership with UC San Diego provides employers with compelling engagement opportunities with top student and alumni talent, the University, community leadership, and cutting-edge research. We focus on co-creating customized recruitment platforms to help you achieve your talent goals. Let's welcome you into the Triton Alliance. More information can be found on our Triton Alliance page.

Student Employment Offer Guidelines for Students

Student Guidelines

  1. These offer guidelines are intended for current full-time UC San Diego students, not written to include part-time students, certificate program or extension students, exchange students, alumni, or other non-full-time UC San Diego students.
  2. Review all terms and conditions of the offer, as well as the acceptance timeline, and do not be pressured by exploding offers* (*See description below).
  3. Accept a job offer in good faith; do not rescind your acceptance the offer.When you accept an offer, know that it is a commitment you are agreeing to ethically honor. Accepting an offer only as temporary or as a precautionary measure while in search of another better offer is misleading to the employer, unprofessional, unethical, and may restrict opportunities for other candidates.
    • Rescinding or reneging on an offer is defined as declining an offer after originally accepting an offer, or accepting multiple offers simultaneously and choosing between them. This is highly discouraged by the Career Center due to its misleading and unethical implications, and is subject to Student Offense Policy (detailed below).
    • Reneging offers damages the reputation of the university and can result in the employer permanently eliminating its partnership with the university.
    • The university understands that there can be unforeseen circumstances that lead to your review of an accepted offer. There are many resources available and we request you meet with a member of the Career Center in advance of your decision deadline. The Career Center has worked with thousands of students to help them review employment offers regardless of where the offer was sourced, discuss extension deadlines, and other time sensitive employer offer decisions.
    • Student Offense Policy: The Career Center reserves the right to restrict or revoke students from any privileges that the Career Center deems necessary. These include, but are not limited to:
      • Involvement in recruiting activities (e.g., career fairs, information sessions, on-campus interviews)
      • Access to your Handshake account
      • Access to professional development opportunities (e.g., career advisors, workshops)
      • The Career Center also reserves the right to report renege offers to a student's academic department and academic advisors.
  1. Communicate your acceptance or refusal/decline of a job offer to employers as promptly as possible, so they can notify other candidates that they are still being considered or that the position is filled.
  2. Withdraw from recruiting when your job search is completed.If you accept an offer or decide to instead pursue full-time graduate or professional studies, notify the Career Center and withdraw from the on-campus recruiting process immediately. Inform employers that are actively considering you for a job or internship that you are now out of the consideration as a candidate to pursue other opportunities.
  3. Report any suspect recruiting activity (e.g. exploding offers, illegitimate offers, demands for payment) to the Career Services Center.
  4. For other resources, please visit the Career Center and see NACE guidelines for negotiating an offer and salary.

Student Employment Offer Guidelines for Employers

These offer guidelines are intended for employers recruiting current full-time UC San Diego students, not written to include part-time students, certificate program or extension students, exchange students, alumni, or other non-full-time UC San Diego students.

Recognizing that students need time to make informed decisions when comparing and responding to offers and employers need to be able to effectively manage their time-sensitive recruitment processes, the following guidelines are intended to provide students and employers a fair and transparent framework for managing the offer phase of the process in this increasingly competitive job market:

  • For all summer internship conversion to a full-time offer to begin after graduation or full-time employment positions to begin after graduation offered from the start of fall quarter to October 16th, employers should allow until November 1st or a minimum of two weeks from the date of the written offer (whichever is less) for students to accept or decline the offer.  For internship offer, internship conversion to a full-time offer, or full-time employment offer opportunities between October 17th and the start of the following fall quarter, employers should allow the student a minimum of two weeks to make a decision on the offer.
  • Employers are recommended to be flexible in granting offer extensions on a case-by-case basis if the circumstances warrant it. 
  • The written offer should clearly state all appropriate terms and conditions, including, but not limited to, position title/description, location, benefits, start date, salary, bonuses, etc. 
  • All bonuses or other incentives are to remain in full effect for the entire duration of the offer period.
  • Students reach out to the Career Center as well as contact employers directly if they have any questions or concerns about their offers, including needing deadline extensions to make their decisions. 
  • Exception to Student Employment Offer Guidelines For Employers:  Offers of Summer 2022 internships to 2023 Summer Leadership Program participants must be given a deadline of two weeks after written offer. Summer interns who are extended offers of full time employment must be given until two weeks from written offer.

Exploding Offers

The UC San Diego Career Center defines an exploding offer as any offer which does not conform with the offer guidelines listed above. Students should not be pressured to accept offers “on the spot” or "early,” whether this is based upon a shorter timeframe for consideration overall and/or due to any special diminishing incentives attached, e.g., tiered or expiring bonuses, reduced options for location preferences, etc. The Career Center expects all employers to refrain from such practices when recruiting students and alumni.

Compensation and Fees

  • Employers offering paid positions must pay at least the California State minimum wage or the applicable local minimum wage if higher (calculated over any time scale such as hourly, weekly, semi-monthly, monthly or annually). For example: Currently the City of San Diego and the City and County of San Francisco have higher minimum wage requirements.
  • Cryptocurrency, bitcoin, tokens, fiat or equity are not acceptable forms of payment.
  • Organizations only offering stipend, unpaid or volunteer positions must meet the organizational definitions and requirements that allow them to do so legally, and they must clearly state the pay status when posting their opportunities on Handshake. Consult your legal counsel regarding any questions.
  • Commission Sales Positions: If no initial base salary is provided, the form of remuneration should be clearly stated in the employer's job descriptions and at the time of the initial interviews.
  • Recruitment for positions requiring monetary outlay by candidates for equipment and training is strongly discouraged and potentially unlawful. Students and recent graduates will be reluctant to apply for such positions. This includes fees for certain federal and state licensing requirements, e.g., real estate, securities, etc. If fees are involved, this information must be explicitly included in the position description.
  • Postings that request donations, application fees, or investments cannot be listed on Handshake.

The Career Center reserves the right to remove job listings on Handshake or decline further service to those employers who do not abide by these compensation/fee guidelines.

On-Campus Recruitment & Job Posting Guidelines

  • All bona fide full-time, part-time, seasonal, and short-term positions and other types of recruiting opportunities for small and large businesses, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, on-campus employers, households, and individuals that conform to the Employer Policies noted above may be posted via Handshake.
  • Preselection Screening Criteria: Major, school year, GPA and work authorization are the screening criteria used for positions in Handshake. Any student who meets these job requirements (as determined by the employer) and submits a resume will be deemed a "fully qualified" applicant. Other interested students who do not match the screening criteria will still be able to submit resumes. They will be appear as "not fully qualified" and are available as candidates for your consideration. Therefore, enter your screening specifications carefully, but without being too restrictive, to ensure the best possible "fully qualified" applicant pool. Please note that students can self-select their work authorization status in Handshake, thus that information has not been verified to use to screen students who are fully qualified, not fully qualified, or prefer not to answer. Students are able to change their year in school in Handshake so employers are encouraged to request students submit unofficial transcripts with their application to verify year in school.
  • OCR Reception Area as Neutral Territory: Employers are asked to respect the neutrality of the On-Campus Recruiting reception area. Students may feel uncomfortable talking to other employers while waiting to be called by their scheduled interviewers. Greeters are permitted as long as their presence does not create an unpleasant environment for students and other recruiters and does not interfere with other Career Center business.

Confidentiality of Student Information

By completing the Handshake registration form and submitting resumes and other application materials for opportunities posted on Handshake, students provide the Career Center authorization to release employment materials to those selected prospective employers. Employment professionals must maintain the confidentiality of all student information released to them, regardless of the source, including personal documents, written records/reports, and computer databases. This means that there should be no disclosure of student information to another organization without the prior written consent of the student, unless necessitated by health and/or safety considerations, in accordance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

Employment Eligibility

In compliance with the Department of Justice's rulings regarding citizenship discrimination and best practices for online job postings, the UC San Diego Career Center does not screen candidates in Handshake based upon employment eligibility. Therefore, the Career Center does not require students to indicate their work authorization status in their Handshake profiles.  Employers may include employment eligibility information in their Handshake job descriptions as a point of information for potential candidates so that the candidates may self-screen.

The Career Center at UC San Diego maximizes employment and internship opportunities for its students by offering a range of services to facilitate recruitment of prospective candidates, including, but not limited to, job/internship postings, on-campus recruiting, career fairs, and information sessions. The Career Center requires that any recruiting organization or individual utilizing these services must agree to the Terms and Conditions and must abide by all applicable federal, state, and local employment laws, including Equal Employment Opportunity laws, UC San Diego rules and regulations, and the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) Principles for Ethical Professional Practice. (Refer to the detailed resources below.)

Employers are encouraged to consult with their legal counsel and establish legally permissible internal screening procedures before posting jobs or recruiting on campus. The Career Center reserves the right to modify or remove any statements or job postings that include any potentially illegal or discriminatory language.

More information re: the DOJ's decisions can be found at:


Students' GPAs are self-reported in Handshake and the Career Center does not verify the accuracy of student GPAs. Employers may include this information in their job descriptions as a point of information for potential candidates. Employers may also request unofficial grade reports or transcripts from students or alumni as part of their required Handshake application documents in order to verify academic performance.

Alcoholic Beverages

In compliance with the University's policy prohibiting the use of alcoholic beverages, employers should not serve alcoholic beverages at any employer-related functions held on or off campus.

Marijuana and Cannabis Industry

The UC San Diego Career Center will not accept companies or positions involved with the use, production, testing, or distribution of recreational or medical marijuana. As the use of marijuana is illegal at the federal level, and UC San Diego receives federal funds, we must comply with federal law. In addition, the use of marijuana violates the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act and continues to be banned on campus.

Exceptions to Policies and Guidelines

The Career Center reserves the right to make exceptions to these policies and guidelines as warranted by special circumstances, i.e., in certain situations deemed to be acceptable and beneficial to our students, the Career Center, the University, or recruiters using our services. Such exceptions will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  Any exception made does not constitute a change in policy, nor is there a guarantee that this same decision will apply in the future.

The Career Center reserves the right to refuse service to organizations or individuals due to any of the following:

  • requiring personal information at the time of application, such as bank and social security numbers;
  • misrepresentation, whether defined by dishonest information or absence of information;
  • fraud;
  • harassment of UC San Diego students, alumni, or staff;
  • breach of confidentiality as required by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA);
  • failure to adhere to Career Center employer guidelines;
  • any violation of University of California rules and regulations;
  • any violation of local, state, or federal laws.