On Wednesday, Sept. 25, students at Fairfield University had the opportunity to put on their best professional attire and make their way to the first career fair of the year. This biannual event took place in the Leslie C. Quick Recreation Complex in the James W. Birkenstock Fieldhouse, with a substantial turnout of both students and employers. 125 businesses and corporations participated in this university-sponsored event. Between the hours of 12:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. students had the opportunity to speak with recruiters, employees and alumni currently working with the companies represented. Employers ranging from non-profits, service organizations and graduate schools were all in attendance.
Deirdre Bennett, manager of employer engagement and one of the organizers of the event, expressed great satisfaction at all the students who attended from the College of Arts and Sciences, Charles F. Dolan School of Business and the School of Engineering.
“We were very happy that 857 students from all classes and majors attended the Career Fair,” Bennett wrote via email. “This was a record turnout! Moving the Career Fair start time to noon proved to be more convenient for students and employers alike.”
Bennett also remarked on additional reactions from the represented employers, stating that, “The feedback from employers was extremely positive. They were impressed with the professionalism of our students and that they came prepared to make career connections.”
The career fair serves as a stepping stone for students who are just beginning to network, or for those later in the process looking to obtain an internship. While there are a wide range of possibilities when entering this networking opportunity, each person can individualize the experience
“I felt a little overwhelmed at first, but it was definitely a great experience to have,” said Emma Tigue ‘22. The event is open to all grades and experience levels. Tigue commented, “It was a great way to network with potential employers, even as early as your sophomore year.”
This was Tigue’s first trip to the career fair, which was prompted by the Sophomore Success course. This course is aimed towards helping sophomores develop a strong resume and networking skills.
However, when it came to the variety of employers attending the fair, Tigue commented, “This event definitely is catered towards the business school, just in the employers that are here today.”
“My options were quite limited in employers,” said Tigue, who hopes to attend medical school after her undergraduate studies at Fairfield, and noted a slight lack in employers seeking science majors, such as herself. Nevertheless, she feels confident and happy she attended the event.
Biology majors had three definitive destinations laid out in the pamphlet handed out at arrival, one of which was a graduate program. While some corporations are open to all majors, there was a plethora of options for business students in all categories.
One business major who is studying accounting, Molly Roche ‘22, encountered a robust list of employers throughout her afternoon at the career fair. “I am an accounting major and many major firms were in attendance today,” Roche noted. While expecting a primarily informational encounter with these firms, she experienced a more personable approach trending throughout her conversations.
“The recruiters, current workers, and Fairfield alumni who have worked within each firm were extremely helpful, and seemed to genuinely care,” she said. “I could tell they could relate to a degree—reflecting on days when they were trying to land an internship as well.” This approach was noted by other students conversing with similar employers and seemed to be specific to the business side of the fair, as casual conversations were struck up between recruiters and current students.
For those students who were unable to attend Wednesday’s fair, or those looking for additional options, upcoming Fairfield career offerings include specialized events such as the Law School Fair on Oct. 10 and Nursing Fair on Oct. 22, followed by another general Career and Internship Fair on Feb. 26, 2020. These events provide further opportunities for undergraduates to network and receive valuable feedback from multiple employers and schools who are seeking to connect and explore opportunities with well-qualified Fairfield students.