News, On Campus

BC Career Fair Brings Employers And Insight To Prospective Job Applicants

Over 100 employers spoke with thousands of Boston College students at the Career Fair last Thursday at Conte Forum.

“The team did a nice job of tweaking the fair to ensure that the majority of organizations were recruiting students from all majors for positions in their organizations,” said Joseph DuPont, associate vice president of student affairs for Career Services, in an email. “There are all sorts of opportunities out there for students of all majors.”

The event was sponsored by Cambridge Associates, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, GE, Liberty Mutual, Oracle, PwC, RBS Citizens, and TJX.

“I think the students at the BC Career Fair are probably the most prepared of all [the students at] the schools that we go to,” said Nicole Guelcher, campus recruiter at TJX, who also noted the large number of schools she visits on a regular basis during the recruiting season. “Great preparation as far as dress, resume, questions that they ask, research they’ve done, so I’m impressed.”

Among the companies at the event were Barclays, Heinz North America, Hill Holliday, Kimberly-Clark, PNC, Teach for America, Toyota, Saks Fifth Avenue, and the U.S. Navy.

“There are a more diverse group of candidates here in terms of what they’re looking for than, say, Bentley or Bryant, which are two other schools I recruit at,” said Nathan Ballentine, director of recruiting at New York Life. “This has I think a more diverse group of graduating seniors in terms of what they’re looking for for permanent positions.”

“I think people here are a lot more eager, very upfront—‘I’m in this business major, and this is what I want and what do you have to offer’—which is a little different, but it’s great,” said Christina Lockett, account manager at Proctor and Gamble. “People are very passionate.”

One of the most popular features at the career fair was the LinkedIn photo booth, where students could have free, professional photos taken of them for their profiles. Career Center staff members were also present throughout the event to help students navigate their way around the extensive array of company booths.

“The career fair brings together employers from many industry sectors which gives students an opportunity to engage in career exploration,” DuPont said. “In the course of conversations with employers, you can start thinking about whether you are interested in a particular type of work and whether you want to learn more about that industry. It is important to engage in this process of discernment and discovery throughout college which is why we encourage students from all class years to attend.”

The Career Fair is open to students of all classes, and the Career Center suggested two ways for students to approach the career fair: low-key or more focused.

Students with a low-key approach could attend to explore possible careers in a variety of industries, while students with a more focused approach could attend to talk with potential employers about jobs and internships.

“To be honest, I didn’t know what I was expecting, but I am happy with the turnout of potential employers,” said Sam Oh, A&S ’17. “I felt like before coming into this, I didn’t have much confidence in knowing and seeing how many options that I’d have, but after coming to this, I feel much more reassured.”

The Career Center has planned more events to follow the career fair: Careers in Health Care on Oct. 1 from 5 to 7 p.m. in Higgins 300; Career Night for the Arts on Nov. 13 from 7 to 9 p.m. in the McMullen Museum; International Careers Networking Event on Nov. 18 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; and Nursing Fair and Career Day on Dec. 8 from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.

“If I could relay one message to students it would be that we know that BC students are at all stages in the career process,” DuPont said. “Whether you are figuring out what you might be passionate about, want some resume advice, or need help refining your job search, we are here to help.”

Featured Image by Kemeng Fan / Heights Staff

September 21, 2014