By: Leah Alsept
Students looking for employment will have an easy time at UF’s Career and Internship Fair
Button down shirt. Tie. Dress shoes. These are just a few of the things needed to make a good impression to employers. Maddie Arquette was one of those students looking to make a good first impression at the University of Findlay Career and Internship Fair.
“I’m looking for opportunities. I’m looking for possible internships. I’m looking for connections and hoping to make connections,” Arquette, the junior business and marketing major said. “To be able to open up those opportunities for internships and hopefully possible job openings in the future.”
Dozens of companies gather to the Alumni Memorial Union on UF’s campus to make connections with students. The fair was cancelled in 2020 but brought back a year later, only for the number of businesses returning limited due to COVID-19 guidelines.
This year, 40 companies on campus are looking for potential employees in these students, says Brad Hammer, director of career and professional development at the University of Findlay,
“It’s a good idea to just come and check out what type of opportunities [are available],” Hammer said. “There’s Marathon, Crown [Equipment Corporation], some of the summer camps or the YMCA. Also a lot of the military branches typically come, so we’ll have the Army, Navy,” he explained.
Another business that set up a booth was BASF Corporation, a Germany-based worldwide chemical company. UF alumnus Evan Rinke (’17) was one of the two BASF employees at the fair to recruit scientifically-minded students.
“We’ve got some promising students that have come by the booth and we’ve got a few resumes here, and some folks actually came by and gave us resumes for next summer. They’ve already got some lined up, but are looking to stay in contact,” Rinke said. “Hopefully we’ll be back next year and we’ll be able to keep a line of interns coming from Findlay.”
But not everyone has as smooth of a time getting interviews for jobs. UF alumnus Cannon Daniel (’21), graduated with a bachelor’s degree in computer science with an emphasis and math. His concern with job-hunting is employers looking for candidates with several years of experience – which, as a freshly graduated alumni, he doesn’t have a lot of.
“A lot of the places I would check out, they would say like every feedback they would give me is ‘man, you seem like such a great person and a hard worker, but we want someone with experience. So we’re gonna reject you,’” Daniel said.
According to research by the LinkedIn Economic Graph, industries involving software and IT services on LinkedIn are especially likely to demand lots of work experience for entry-level jobs at 60.3%.
“It seems like at least here [at the Career and Internship Fair], a lot of [businesses] are looking for intentionally undergraduate or people with little to no experience,” said Daniel, hopeful about his prospects at the fair.
Hammer says the fair is “super low stakes with potential high rewards.”
“All you really need to do is walk in through the door, go and introduce yourself to somebody that’s here,” Hammer said. “You could end up with an amazing experience internship that could lead to a full-time job.”
Arquette says she’s not nervous at all because of the welcoming environment at the fair.
“Once I got here, I was really surprised by how open the environment was and how opening and helpful people were,” she said. Arquette has her eyes set on Marathon Petroleum and ProMedica Health Systems.
Hammer gave advice to students who were feeling a little nervous before going to the fair.
“Just doing a little bit of research beforehand will help to ease those nerves,” he said. “If it is the first time [at the fair] and you’re kind of scared, go up and talk to somebody that you don’t even know what they do… [and] have that conversation [to] kind of break the ice, calm your nerves, and then go and talk to the ones that are like high on your priority list.”
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