Career showcase connects students and employers


Published: Wednesday, January 25, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Tuesday, January 24, 2006 at 9:14 p.m.
Dressed in business suits and carrying portfolios containing updated resumes, students and recent graduates flocked to the O'Connell Center Tuesday for the first day of the Career Resource Center's Career Showcase.
The event, which goes on through today, gives students the opportunity to meet with different companies to set up interviews and gain information about job and internship possibilities.
"The goal is to connect students to employment opportunities," said Nadine Francis, assistant director for public relations at the Career Resource Center. "Employers want to hire them."
The first day of the event featured more than 150 companies looking to hire students in the fields of construction, computer science and Internet technology. Francis estimated that as of 1 p.m. as many as 1,500 students had wandered through.
Companies were set up at tables featuring bright banners aimed at attracting students' attention. Many of the tables were covered in pamphlets and giveaways for students to take.
"It is convenient to have all of the employers in one spot," said Michael Muhly, a computer and electrical engineering senior. "It gives me good experience interviewing."
Although unable to give an exact figure, Francis said that students have been successful in finding jobs at the fair in the past.
According to the number of hires reported to the Career Resource Center in 2005, the top three employers were Pulte Homes, Walt Disney World and the accounting firm Ernst & Young.
Students waited in lines sometimes as long as 20 people to get an interview.
"I have interviewed with four companies today and waited in long lines for each one," said Sanketi Mehta, computer engineering major. "But, it is worth it."
Kristine Singley, a senior project engineer at Disney, said she saw a couple hundred students throughout the day.
"It is a very well-organized event and students are well prepared," she said.
Not all students attending the event sought an internship or a job. Some wanted to expose themselves to how the event works.
Francis stressed the importance of starting freshman year. She said that once you meet the employers you get more comfortable. By the time you are ready to interview it is clear that they aren't so bad.
"It is the greatest feeling to watch a student who came into my office as a freshman, unsure what they wanted to do, go confidently into an interview," Francis said.
The second day of the event takes place today and features about 170 companies hiring in the fields of business, communications, banking and human resources.
For more information about the Career Resource Center visit their Web site at www.crc.ufl.edu.

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