By Elliott Nguyen
Ambitious students made their way into the Student Recreation Center to kick off the College’s 2020 Spring Career and Internship Fair on Wednesday, Feb. 19, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Over 150 companies were present including Amazon, Bank of America and the U.S. Department of Labor.
Each company was assigned one of the many tables arranged in rows throughout the room, with representatives available to answer prospective students’ questions as well as gauge interest.
“It’s a little chaotic … it’s just the nature of a career fair,” said Aaron Kopew, a freshman economics major who aspires to be either a lawyer or a data analyst. He said he attended the fair because he was curious about valuation firms.
Although the companies in attendance represented a wide variety of fields, some students were unable to find the opportunities that they were looking for.
Kevin Ehresman, a junior computer science major who is looking for an opportunity as a software developer or data scientist, said there was “not a whole lot that’s for me.”
He added that he has been to several career fairs at the College and hoped to secure a job or internship from this one.
Victoria Maamari, a sophomore political science major who is planning on becoming a lawyer, said that she was attending the fair for her first time and had yet to find any law firms.
Another student agreed that finding jobs or internships requires hard work, and younger students often find it even more difficult to land a coveted role.
“As a sophomore, it’s tough to get an internship,” said Joe Wagner, a sophomore civil engineering major.
Representatives from various companies offered insight on what makes a student stand out.
“Dress to impress,” said a representative from Ciocca Dealerships. She said students should have high energy, a positive attitude and a drive to succeed. “Follow-up is huge in this industry,” she added.
Representatives of One Beacon Insurance Group described their ideal applicant as a “sponge” — eager and willing to absorb everything. They said that having leadership skills and taking initiative were also important qualities.
Despite the competitive nature of the job and internship hunt, companies say the opportunities they can provide students are beneficial, despite the draining process that comes with attaining these roles.
The representative of Ciocca Dealerships stressed that their paid internships would offer students plenty of “opportunities to grow.”
The representatives of One Beacon said their company was close-knit, “like a family.” They said students that came in at an entry-level position had plenty of room to climb.
“I’ve had an internship every summer, but I’ve never gotten one from here,” said Jacob Willsey, a senior management major.
Although some students are skeptical of the career fair, the Career Center seems to be open to making improvements, sending out a campus-wide email with a survey after the event.