September 22, 2009 12:00AM
Pittsburg State University is helping students and employers make a connection this week with two big career fairs that will welcome more than 125 companies to campus.
The College of Technology, with the assistance of the Office of Career Services, will host its annual Company Day event from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 23, at the Kansas Technology Center. The event will welcome between 80-90 companies from various industries, including automotive, plastics, construction and graphics.
Each year, companies line the halls of the KTC in booths, speaking and interviewing with students who are interested in a career in their field. College of Technology Dean Bruce Dallman said that although the event has spun into a day for students to land jobs, that wasn't always the case.
"The concept was never to be a day where companies come just to hire," he said. "The design is to bring them in, give students an idea of their expectations and give the students more familiarity with companies in their field."
Dallman acknowledged that while students are receiving fewer job offers due to a tighter economy, rooms at the KTC are booked solid for interviews. "The vast majority of our graduates and interns are still getting job offers," he said.
Mindy Cloninger, director of the Office of Career Services, said she is seeing the same trends throughout the rest of the university. The Career Expo: Business and Industry will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 24 in the Crimson and Gold Ballroom, and Cloninger said many of the 50 companies in attendance will be spending time interviewing students.
"Even with the downturn in the economy, companies are telling us they still value PSU's programs and graduates," Cloninger said. "We're spending a lot of time instilling confidence in students. Our message to them is that they must be prepared more than ever before. Their resumes need to be error-free and they need to work on presenting the best possible representation of themselves."
Cloninger said that while it appears the May 2009 graduating class has had a more challenging time finding jobs, the positions they are landing are high-quality with growing salaries. Graduates from several areas including education, nursing, business and technology have reported success in finding jobs.
"It's telling us that it's more important than ever to get a degree in order to be competitive," Cloninger said.
On Oct. 6, the office will host Career Boost, a mini version of last spring's Career Makeover. Several professionals from across campus with speak at the event, covering topics such as resume writing, interview skills and networking. The event will be held from 4-6 p.m. in Overman Student Center.
For more information on Company Day or the Career Expo, contact the Office of Career Services at 620-235-4140 or go to http://www.pittstate.edu/office/careers/.