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Fall Career Expo one of largest in recent history

November 07, 2012 12:00AM

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Fredrick Njoroge, of Leggett & Platt Inc., talks to student Alexander Meisinger, of Kansas City, Kan., about opportunities with the company.

As the end of his days as a university student nears, Kevin Wallace has spent a lot of time online searching for potential professional opportunities.

“I have a year left, so I’ve definitely been out there looking to see what could be available when I graduate,” said Wallace, a senior double-majoring in management and marketing and communication. “With today’s job market, though, it can be scary.”

On Tuesday, Wallace and more than 300 of his fellow Pittsburg State University students got a first-hand look at a variety of professional opportunities during the fall Career Expo, which took place in the Crimson and Gold Ballroom of the Overman Student Center.

“This has been excellent,” Wallace said. “It’s getting us exposure to a variety of industries, and we’re making connections that could help us if we end up applying at a company we saw at this event.”

More than 80 companies and agencies attended the expo, making it one of the largest in recent history.

“We’re very proud of the fact that we’ve had such a large number of companies and organizations participate in the expo,” said Mindy Cloninger, director of PSU’s Office of Career Services. “There is a positive energy in the room, and many of the companies here are hiring.”

David Hogard, assistant director for employer relations in PSU’s Office of Career Services, said the large turnout was due in part to the combination of what used to be two separate expos – one for business and industry, and another for health, human services and education.

“We wanted to combine the two events into one so students would have a more diverse look at what’s out there,” Hogard said. “The response to that has been phenomenal, and we’re very pleased with the size of this fall’s expo.”

For the companies represented, the event is an opportunity to meet soon-to-be graduates and make connections that may lead to a job or internship.

“This is a good chance for us to get out and have face-to-face interaction with potential applicants,” said Ken Clark, Names and Numbers director of sales recruiting. “You can have your job boards and online postings, but that can be like peeking through a keyhole. Meeting with students face-to-face gives us a much better feel for them and what they could offer.”

Ella Lewis, a sophomore communication major, said she attended the expo in search of an internship.

“It can be intimidating, walking into a room with this many people,” Lewis said, “but it’s also a wonderful opportunity to get your name out there. You don’t always know what to expect when you’re applying for jobs online. With an event like this, you meet real people and you know exactly what’s being discussed and what’s expected.”

For more information about PSU’s Office of Career Services, visit www.pittstate.edu/careers.

©2012 Pittsburg State University