Winter Career Fair prepares students for the future

On Feb. 8, Oakland University Career Services hosted a career fair on the top floor of the Oakland Center. Students were invited to visit with over 100 different employers to explore an array of career opportunities.

Representatives from Career Services welcomed students to the event from the check-in desk. Each attendee was provided with a nametag and a map, which allowed them to easily find the booths of employers they were most interested in. 

“My job at the event was to assist with student check-in. It was great to see the large turnout of students,” Jordan Smith, a career ambassador from Career Services, said. “As a freshman, being able to assist in the career fair has given me an exciting glimpse into my future.”

After checking in, students were free to visit employers. The participating employers were organized by industry, making it convenient for students to peruse booths which most closely aligned with their career interests. Additionally, select employers provided the opportunity for students to sign up for interviews after the fair.

“The career fair was very well organized,” junior Christy Remer said. “It was a really exciting experience.”

QR codes were placed in lounge areas at the event, and when scanned, they presented employment opportunities sorted by class rank. This gave students the opportunity to research each employer before meeting with them in person. 

Career Services also provided a free LinkedIn photo booth service. By utilizing this resource, students were able to obtain quality headshots to include on their LinkedIn page.

Many employers in attendance have had success in employing students from OU. Internships and short-term employment with these companies could lead to long-term job offers.

Some companies at the career fair placed a greater emphasis on preparing students for long-term employment. 

Challenge Detroit — a year-long fellowship program that serves local nonprofit organizations — is a company that provides leadership and service opportunities to students. Although Challenge Detroit does not typically offer long-term employment, the program provides useful networking opportunities and professional skills.

“Challenge Detroit has had a long-standing relationship with Oakland University,” Paulette Bolofer-Fulkerson, the talent and engagement manager for Challenge Detroit, said. “The university keeps providing us quality employees each year, so we keep coming back. It is great to see the professionalism these students display.”

Upon the completion of the career fair, select employers conducted interviews with students. This gave students the opportunity to demonstrate their professional readiness and academic achievements while putting their interviewing skills to practice.

Following the career fair, Career Services has several educational opportunities planned for the remainder of February. On Feb. 15, they will host an Exploring Inclusion in the Workplace Networking Mixer from 4:30-6:00 p.m. in the Oakland Center Habitat. On Feb. 20, they will host an Imposter Syndrome Panel in the Habitat from 12:00-1:30 p.m.