On Tuesday, September 17th, the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development hosted the 2019 Fall Career Fair.
The Fall Career Fair is a great opportunity for students to talk to recruiters and get started on their professional network. Over 3,000 students came to Notre Dame’s Joyce Center eager to network with visiting employers. Erin Doyle, Notre Dame class of ‘21, attended the fair in hopes of seeing what opportunities might appeal to her. “I’m here to see what my options are. I’m interested in non-profit work, not really the corporate side of things.” Erin also noted that there are benefits to attending the fairs even if you’re not in search of a current opportunity, “I’m here to get some experience and practice for future fairs.”
Companies from a wide variety of industries such as healthcare, consulting, aerospace, manufacturing and many more were present. In total, 212 companies attended the Fall Career Fair, several of them returning year after year in search of recruiting Notre Dame students. Sazerac’s Monica Fallon, ND ‘19, said Notre Dame students are “Well-rounded, motivated, and driven.” She expressed that Sazerac continues to come back to recruit because “They [students] know what they want. That’s why we recruit here.”
Some recruiters attended looking for specific qualifications. “We’re looking for students who have a passion for technology and for working with people. Experience with technology is ideal, but definitely not the end-all-be-all here: we’re looking for problem solvers.” Travis Gayle with Pariveda Solutions noted that they’re not stuck to one ideal though, “We’ve moved beyond recruiting just Computer Science and Computer Engineering majors. We want students who can demonstrate that they’re analytical, whether they’re from ACMS, IT Management, Business Analytics, or other majors.”
Other recruiters shared that core competencies, like problem-solving, teamwork, and professionalism, are important characteristics when searching for a future hire. “We’re looking for self-motivated, competent, driven individual,” E.&J. Gallo Winery’s Molly O’Koniewski, ND ‘15, explained. Having knowledge of the company when talking to recruiters also demonstrates that extra effort was put into preparation for the potential interaction with a recruiter. Monica Fallon, Sazerac, shared guidance for students saying, “I’d advise students to really go that extra mile, do your research, make sure you’re ready for questions, and be ready to highlight your skills.”
Several workshops and events were held in conjunction with the Fall Career Fair in hopes of helping students make connections with visiting employers and preparing them for the big event. Career fair attendee Keenan Lofton, ND ‘22, shared that he spent the morning at the Arts & Letters Career Panel. “Teach for America was one of the speakers there - they really captivated me.” The panel, an opportunity for students to prepare for the fair and network with A&L alumni, sparked Keenan’s interest in other companies he hadn’t originally considered. “I’m looking to talk to the other companies that were at the panel, too, so I’ll go to General Mills and E.&J. Gallo Winery next.”
Around 430 students interviewed with 52 companies the day following the Fall Career Fair. Interviews were held on the 5th floor of the Duncan Student Center at the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development and across from campus at the Embassy Suites.
Recruiters will be returning for the Center for Career Development’s 2020 Winter Career Fair on Tuesday, January 28 in the Dahnke Ballroom.