Caleb Oswell photo editor
Career Services put on the Fall Career Fair for students to network with businesses.
The bi-annual event was held from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 19 in the Overman Student Center Ballroom. The fair was open to students from all majors. Employers came from various backgrounds to network and search for career opportunities, such as internships or full-time positions. Over 100 companies registered to come to the fall career fair. According to Forbes, 80% of jobs are filled through networking and about 70%-80% of job openings go unposted.
Tim Opeka, senior in finance, went to the fall career fair to network with a broad range of companies with positions relating to finance and accounting. Opeka’s goal is to become a financial analyst out of college and got several interviews connecting through LinkedIn and Handshake.
“Networking is really the bigger thing from my experience,” Opeka said. “Most every position I’ve ever gotten is through networking, meeting people, talking face to face… Personally, I have a particular goal I want to achieve. But, if that goal doesn’t happen, that’s alright. So, I’m going to keep my options open and not put all my eggs in one basket.”
Kelly Rowlett and David Donovan with the Sedgwick County Department of Corrections came to the career fair to look for students interested in careers and internships with their department.
“Some people like to think ‘Oh, I want to do that job,” Rowlett said. “The internship enlightens them by hands on experience and that is eye opening to say, ‘do I really want to do that job?’ or ‘if this isn’t for me, I like it more in the textbooks. But in real life? I can’t handle it…’ Because a lot of college students, they get focused on their classrooms, getting the degree done, but they’re not broadening their scopes or their horizons.”
The Sedgwick County Department of Corrections said the value of college-educated students lies beyond their skills in their fields. Donovan looks for students with the ability to continuously learn and grow from new experiences.
“There’s so much variety as we kind of like people who are interested in just exploring: ‘what’s out there?” Donovan said. “I myself started working in mental health at Sedgwick County, now I’m in HR. So, there’s opportunities to learn different skills and kind of then combine those and move up. So, people who are really kind of looking to learn, continue learning, and then apply that learning and you have maybe part of their life, part of their career, and just seeing where they can go from there… I’m always also really willing to talk to students who maybe don’t quite know.”
Savanna Malcolm, senior in business management, came to the fair to look for a summer internship and do classwork for business professionalism and human resource management.
“I’m big on the workplace environment,” Malcolm said. “But I really want to have a good company culture where we go and do stuff outside of business like go and work in the community, some different stuff like that, so that’s what really attracts me to different companies.”
Malcolm also used Handshake to schedule interviews with different companies for entry level positions in human resources.
“It lets you meet a lot of businesses that you wouldn’t meet otherwise and they’re all here looking for employees,” Malcolm said. “So that’s nice to be able to come and talk to them and get to know about their business in a shorter time span. So, I can talk to a lot of different companies, try to see if I’m a better fit for them and they could see if they like me and it’s just reaching out to companies, it’s a lot easier.”