Every year around this time, students start to wonder about their summer job possibilities. This year over 1,400 York students came out to the Underground on Feb. 6 to meet representatives from 32 organizations hiring for summer positions. Organized by the Career Centre at York University, the Summer Employment Fair provided an opportunity for York students to meet employers, promote their skills and experiences, and explore a variety of summer jobs.
In a new initiative, the Career Centre posted employer profiles on their Web site prior to the fair so that students could not only find out which companies were attending, but also what positions they were offering, and how best to apply for those positions. Students could also access tips online about how to prepare for the fair, included strategies for making a good first impression with employers.
Left: Over 1,400 students attended the Summer Employment Fair organized by York’s Career Centre
Many of the students who attended this year’s fair had visited the Web site which experienced 5,400 hits two weeks prior to the fair. As a result, the students knew which employers they wanted to meet and were ready to talk to them about their summer positions.
"I prepared for the fair by looking at the Web site and tailored my resumé to specific companies. I spoke directly to people at the company and got their feedback right away," said a fourth-year Atkinson marketing student. "It was well worth coming out today to speak to (employers) directly."
Employers were, in turn, impressed with students’ preparation. "Students were very prepared. (They) already knew how to apply and came with their resumés. I can tell the fair has been well-marketed because students were even coming with cover letters addressed specifically to us," said a representative from Centreville Amusement Park. The park employs over 400 students each summer.
Right: A representative from Ontario Place chats with a York student
Another employer from Ontario Place said, "York’s is one of the most successful career fairs we go to. The students are engaged, enthusiastic and well prepared and are specifically interested in our company’s summer positions."
The Summer Employment Fair is just one of the many ways York students can find out about summer job opportunities. Some organizations – often those who recruit fewer numbers of students for the summer – do not attend events like the Summer Employment Fair as they recruit students through other methods.
Students interested in learning how to connect with these and other summer employers can check out the Career Centre’s S.U.N. Series of programs. The S.U.N. Series combines workshops, Webinars, online chats and an information-rich Web tool designed to help students learn where to look for summer opportunities and how to make the most out of a summer work experience.
For more information, visit the York Career Centre Web site.