University of Minnesota Crookston’s 2022 Career and Internship Fair was relaunched September 15, 2022 with over 40 employers present, close to 200 students registered, five panels of experts, a career champion luncheon, and a new location, inside the Sargeant Student Center, to top it off. Known as the marquis event for the career services program, and being the first one held on campus since 2019, the 2022 fair was said to have exceeded everyone’s expectations.
Career Fair organizer Nan Thurston says the goal for this year was to create a more “innovative approach” for students and businesses to interact in a fair that would allow students to practice networking and building social and cultural capital as keys for their future.
“We were thrilled to see the excitement throughout the event and hear from attendees that our Career and Internship Fair was a resounding success.” Thurston stated. “Research from the 2021 National Survey of Student Engagement shows that college students who spend time on career prep as undergraduates, particularly building professional networks and social capital, report greater confidence in their workplace skills and clarity in their career plans.”
“I was also impressed with how many of our alumni were represented in the employer groups at this year’s fair,” she added. “It shows that our graduates are out there making a difference, and shows how much our alumni are excited to give back and help create the next generation of Golden Eagles as professionals in the world that awaits them.”
The once-a-year event helps students learn about the industry, build professional relationships and gain exclusive access to internship and job opportunities. One student who attended the fair said they were able to form networks of connections and another mentioned that the fair was a great example of “putting yourself out there” to interact with different cultures and different people.
“We had a chance to connect with many students and share more about our opportunities, and even connect with a club while on campus,” shared Haley Nelson, recruitment manager for Conservation Corps Minnesota.
“We met some great students and enjoyed meeting several of the other employers on site,” added Cindy Sikkema, talent acquisition recruiter for SEVITA/REM North Star.
UMN Crookston faculty and staff also gave accolades about the event, making comments like “the location was fabulous”, “the success of the event has been a topic of conversation by faculty” and how it “warmed hearts to see so much cross-campus representation.”
“It was a wonderful showcase of how campus can be when we all work together and leadership supports great ideas,” said Megan Pederson, teaching specialist.
Thurston says planning for the 2023 career fair is already underway. For more information about career services, visit https://crk.umn.edu/units/career-services.