On Tuesday, Oct. 2, about 120 international, national and local employers congregated at UNO to meet students and fill thousands of job positions. The career fair was planned and hosted entirely by Career Services, the on-campus office whose primary goal is to prepare UNO students for the workforce.
“This was probably our best Career Fair to date. It honestly gets better and better every year!” said Director of Career Services Celyn Boykin.
Students and alumni who registered for the fair received free name tags and a labeled map of the University Center ballroom and gallery lounge, both of which were completely full with the employers’ many tables and displays.
Chevron, Chick-fil-A, DXC Technology, the FBI, General Electric, the Naval Oceanographic Office, Nike and Ochsner were just some of the many present at the career fair.
These are only a few of the several dozen employers with which Career Services must coordinate to plan the career fair. Nearly every employer brought with it a set of fresh opportunities for students and the community at large.
Said Boykin, “UNO is one of a consortium of universities that has a partnership with DXC Technology, who recently opened an office in New Orleans to provide job opportunities to our students and over 2000 technology jobs to the state of Louisiana.”
Meanwhile, industrial distributor Fastenal has been offering management trainee programs to students.
“[They] work around the student’s schedule, allowing them to develop their skills and build practical, real-world experience before entering the work force,” said Tyrone Shoemaker, Career Services’ job location and development coordinator.
General Electric also offers a similar program. “UNO has built a great relationship with GE, which has recruited many students for their apprenticeship program, which often leads to a career,” said Boykin.
After one career fair ends, Career Services begins planning for the next one.
Hard work goes into every facet of the event. For example, the career fair’s map of employer tables requires hours of design, and the spreadsheet of open job positions matched to major programs at UNO “takes several weeks to compile,” said Boykin.
When Career Services isn’t coordinating its annual career fair, it is offering a plethora of other services for the student body’s benefit.
Said Boykin, “We offer students and alumni assistance with their resume, with mock/practice interviews, job and internship searches and matching, networking skills, career assessments, career coaching, various career orientations and career workshops each semester.”
In addition, UNO coordinates with Tulane, Loyola, Dillard and Xavier to plan for the Superdome’s annual Mardi Gras Career Expo, which also brings local and national employers.
“We also offer one on one scheduled appointments with our team to assist with any of the students’ employment or career needs,” said Shoemaker.
Meanwhile, those preparing for the job market can visit myapps.uno.edu and download the Handshake app onto their phones, using the same sign-in as for their UNO accounts.
“Handshake allows students to search for jobs and internships as well as other opportunities for career related events from local and national employers,” added Boykin. On the app, students can also schedule an appointment with Career Services to address their needs in searching for a career.
Career Services exists to aid the students and alumni of UNO, whether that means giving career advice to inexperienced students, or hosting a massive job fair to engage and encourage students.
“The reports by employers that they hired a certain amount of students from this event or a student coming back to us and sharing their story that they were hired is priceless,” said Shoemaker.
“This is the reason we host this event. It is for the benefit of the students,” said Boykin