Students have a chance this week to get a head-start on their job hunt.
University Career Services is hosting its biggest events of the year — the Diversity Job and Internship Fair and the Fall Job and Internship Expo — Friday and Saturday, respectively.
“You need to think about this as an opportunity to expand your horizons,” said Jeff Sackaroff, associate director of career services.
“With about 150 companies, there are guaranteed to be companies there you’ve never heard of or companies you’ve heard of that have opportunities beyond what you expect.”
Sackaroff said it might seem early in the year to be looking for a job, but employers are interested now.
The career fairs are open to all students and all majors.
“The number one skill desired by employers is good communication skills,” said Emily Strader, part-time job coordinator for University Career Services.
Strader said employers are not looking for specific majors and grade point averages.
Instead, employers are looking for skills students have earned from their experiences, she said.
“There is truly a business for any major. Everything from Google to Wolf Trap is coming,” Strader said.
Groups of all kinds — national, local, for-profit and non-profit — will be attending.
“We always get some great interns and volunteers (from UNC),” said Tullie Johnson, coordinator of volunteers, interns, and technical assistance for the N.C. Museum of Natural Sciences.
Johnson, who will attend the Fall Job and Internship Expo, said she is looking for students with graphics and computer skills, but she also has opportunities for other majors.
Stella Lam, a recruiter at RTI International, is also attending the expo. It is a non-profit institute that provides research and technical services to organizations around the world.
“We found that UNC has a great diversity of students, and the classes really train them for what we need for our positions,” she said.
“We are a very diverse organization, so it’s really nice to see that the courses and the major offers align with what we need.”
University Career Services is also helping students prepare for the fairs.
Along with a workshop this afternoon, students can also go to walk-in hours every Monday through Friday from 1 p.m. until 4 p.m.
Organizers said students should prepare by bringing their resumes, dressing professionally, researching employers beforehand and planning at least three questions to ask employers.
Kelly Geiger, a freshman psychology major, said she wasn’t sure if she was going to attend any of the fairs.
“I don’t like it, because it’s a lot of competition to get your word in,” she said.
“I don’t like the crowds. It’s kind of uncomfortable.”
Sackaroff said students should attend because they help students decide what to do next in their job searches.
“No one is going to leave the career fair next Thursday with a job … But hopefully they’ll leave with some next steps,” he said.
“It’s an important step.”
Senior Writer Paula Seligson contributed reporting.
Contact the desk editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
To get the day's news and headlines in your inbox each morning, sign up for our email newsletters.