Portfolium Raises $1.2M to Help College Students Land That First Job

Portfolium, a Web-based social network for students preparing to start their careers, said it has closed on $1.2 million in new venture funding, bringing its total funding to $2.1 million since 2013, when the San Diego-based startup was founded.

The investors are New York’s University Ventures, an investment firm focused exclusively on global higher education (and not to be confused with student-managed University Ventures in Salt Lake City, UT); the new angel group Seed San Diego; and Vertical Venture Partners, a Silicon Valley fund that oversees the UC San Diego-centric Triton Technology Fund.

As I reported earlier this year, founding CEO Adam Markowitz started Portfolium mostly to help students create an online profile that would showcase their academic skills, projects, experience, and community service for prospective employers. The startup has expanded since then, at least conceptually, to become more of a career readiness network—connecting students from over 2,000 universities with prospective employers.

The startup intends to use the new funding at least partly to re-imagine the near-graduation process of campus recruiting. Referring to an estimated $19 billion that companies spend each year on campus recruiting programs, Portfolium says it’s working to accelerate that recruiting effort by helping companies quickly come up with a short list of qualified student job candidates.

As part of that effort, Portfolium said it has partnered with eQuest, a San Francisco-based job-posting service, to help students connect directly with employers. This is a busy field in edtech that has gone through some consolidation; see companies like Collegefeed (acquired by AfterCollege), MyEdu (bought by Blackboard), and Smarterer (bought by Pluralsight).

“We believe Portfolium has a massive opportunity to establish the first competency marketplace for higher education, allowing students and employers to find one another on the basis of student work, and the competencies that can be derived from that work,” said University Ventures’ Ryan Craig in the statement from the company.

Bruce V. Bigelow was the editor of Xconomy San Diego from 2008 to 2018. Read more about his life and work here. Follow @bvbigelow

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