York’s Fall Career Fair attracts more than 4,500 students

The Fall Career Fair saw a terrific turnout with more than 4,500 students and 35 organizations representing a wide range of industries attending the event. The diverse employers represented at the fair included the Canada Revenue Agency, the Ontario Public Service, TD Canada Trust and Xerox Canada. Organizations attending this year’s fair were hiring York students and new grads for full-time, part-time, internship and summer positions.

Paulina Klimowicz (right), recruitment specialist with Xerox Canada, returned to the fair this year because, as she says, “It was the best career fair Xerox did last year and they got the best hires from York University.”

“We feel that York University students are hard-working and very outgoing, a quality we really look for when recruiting for our entry level positions, especially the account manager role that requires a lot of interaction,” said Klimowicz.

“Because York is such a big school and has so many students, we meet a lot of diverse candidates with various educational backgrounds and experiences. We also find that York students are high energy and social, very important qualities to the Xerox team,” she said. “We look for individuals who enjoy a fast paced environment and working with people, which we find at the York University Career Fair.”

Students and new grads who attended the fair, which took place on Sept. 28 at York’s Keele campus, came for several reasons. Some were looking for a specific job at a company they had targeted while others wanted to explore their career options and network with a variety of employers. Danielle Alcock, a fifth-year anthropology student in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies said, “The Career Fair gives students the opportunity to come out and see what companies are out there and what they’re searching for.”

To help students make the most of their Career Fair experience, the Career Centre offered additional Resume Writing and Making a Great First Impression workshops leading up to the event and published tips for career fair success on the fair website. For the first time ever, the Career Centre team offered over 100 Rapid Resume Review appointments on site during the fair.

Andrew Gould, a third-year student in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies Communications Studies Program and a Research at York (RAY) student working as the multimedia production assistant at the Career Centre, videotaped the event while second-year Schulich students, Kevin Kang and Katherine Chung interviewed students and employers. Check out their video montage of the Fall Career Fair.

Students who took advantage of the Career Centre’s services came to the fair equipped to make a positive impression on prospective employers and stand out from the crowd. One of them was Alcock. “I did a lot of preparation,” she said. “I checked out the website, I checked out which [companies] are receiving resumes today and which companies are offering internships, so I made sure that I’m very prepared in terms of what they’re looking for and even altered my resume to make sure that I’d be meeting their needs.”

Yong Kim (left), recruitment leader at Edward Jones, had advice for students to help them distinguish themselves. “When you speak with potential employers don’t talk about a job as something you’re just sort of interested in,” he said. “I recommend that when you approach [employers] you let them know that it’s something you’re passionate about, it’s a long-term decision and a career commitment. What makes students stand apart is if they can show commitment and passion for the particular industry or for the company itself.”

Jennifer Bramer, director of the York University Career Centre, said, “Connecting students with employers is what career fairs are all about. We’re delighted to be able to offer this type of event to York students and new graduates where they can learn about opportunities, get valuable insights from employers and expand their networks.”

Students who missed the Career Fair can view employer profiles of companies that attended to learn more about the types of positions available and how to apply. The Career Centre will host its Winter Career Fair on Jan. 27, 2011. In addition to events like this, the Career Centre offers a number of opportunities for students to connect with employers and alumni. Students can visit the Career Cente website for more information.