Feeling a little discouraged from a previous career fair experience, MTSU graduate student Janet Oteri didn't let that stop her from dressing for success with resume in hand as she attended MTSU's Fall Career Fair.
"I am more prepared … I actually researched some of the companies and know what they want — I knew what to expect and what questions to ask (employers), so I'm pretty confident now," Oteri said.
Hundreds of students and MTSU alumni joined Oteri, a finance major and native of Nigeria, on the journey of landing an internship or even a job with one of the nearly 160 employers who set up shop Wednesday, Oct. 25, at Murphy Center.
Hosted by the Career Development Center of Middle Tennessee State University, this year’s fair drew more than 1,000 students and alumni. And while admission to the event was free, the stakes were somewhat high for MTSU senior Austin Brennstuhl.
"My reason for being here is to not only find a job but also find a position I feel welcomed at and be successful," said Brennstuhl, an agriculture business major scheduled to graduate in December.
Several attendees found themselves making great connections at the career fair, the only campuswide fair of the academic year.
"It seems easier to talk to people, so then when I go in the interview I can be ready and prepared," Brennstuhl said. "Going to this fair helps me loosen up so when that time does come for an interview, I'm relaxed and not nervous.”
A few participating employers said they attended the fair in order to relay information that may otherwise be misunderstood just by looking on their websites and to also build a personal connection with potential hires.
"It's really important for us to meet with students directly and see what their interests are and have a conversation with them about what we do," said Bridget O'ara, representing medical benefits management company Evicore Healthcare.
Oteri plans to finish the master's program in finance in summer 2018 and feels highly confident that she'll be hearing back from AMSURG, a healthcare service company, with a job offer or internship opportunity.
"I talked to a representative and it was as if I knew he needed someone with my background," Oteri said. "They're currently recruiting and he took my resume, so I'm pretty happy."
“The majority of employers do their recruiting in the fall semester for summer hires … it’s a great opportunity to get some information you wouldn’t normally get from a website or a job posting,” said Bill Fletcher, director of the Career Development Center.
The MTSU Career Development Center provides service to all students in each of the university's nine colleges. Students have the ability to come to the center's office located in the Keathley University Center Room 328 for walk-in advising, resume critique, and more. Scheduled appointments are also available with career advisers.
For more information about the Fall Career Fair or the Career Development Center, call 615-898-2500 or visit www.mtsu.edu/career.
— Jayla Jackson (firstname.lastname@example.org)