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Students prepare for 2011 Fall Career Expo

Victoria Moreno | Thursday, September 8, 2011

Students will trade their jeans and flip-flops for suits and Notre Dame-engraved resume folders as they head to the Career Center’s Fall Career Expo today.

Notre Dame’s annual Expo shows that the University refuses to be a passive participant in the current economic climate, said Lee Svete, director of the Career Center.

“In the midst of a stagnating economy and poor jobs report released last week, Notre Dame welcomes 149 employers and more than 300 recruiters to this career fair,” he said.

Approximately 2,000 students are expected to attend the fair, held from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Joyce Center Field House, Svete said.

Junior Jenna Richman, a management and consulting major, is among the attendees.

“Of course I’m worried [about getting a job after graduation],” Richman said. “I know networking is a big part of the job process, so the Career Fair seems like a good idea.”

Some students said they would attend the Expo more for the experience, than with any particular networking agenda in mind.

“It’s a good opportunity to meet people in the field and get a feel for what to expect in the real world,” said junior Andy Boes, a political science major in the College of Arts & Letters.

The Career Expo is open to all college majors and all undergraduate or graduate students at Notre Dame, Svete said. The participating industries range from banking to education and recruit at a variety of degree levels, from bachelor’s to master’s.

The types of job commitments available include internships, full-time employment, part-time employment and externships.

Despite the fact that many participants are looking for students with a variety of backgrounds and majors, many Notre Dame students feel as if the Career Expo only targets students in the Mendoza School of Business, said junior Catie Hrarbrick, a psychology major in the College of Arts & Letters.

“I am a liberal arts major and I feel like the Career Fair is more for students with business majors,” Hrabrick said.

Senior Jill Kapturowski also felt that the Career Fair appeals to business-oriented students.

“I am planning on getting my master’s in nursing, so I don’t see the point in going to the Career Fair,” she said. “If graduate school doesn’t work out, then I will worry about getting a job.”

Still, many students view the Fall Career Expo as a step toward their future and hope to make a connection with an employer or secure a job opportunity, senior Anne Kaifes, a marketing major, said.

“I went to the Career Center and met with my advisor to work on my resume and interviewing skills,” Kaifes said. “I am also attending the marketing networking event the day before the Career Fair to get some extra practice in a professional environment.”

Senior Andrew Dupont, a management entrepreneurship major, said he prepared for the Expo with the help of more than just his advisor and the Career Center.

“It took a lot of prayer and discernment, some talk with my friend Sydney and a quick check of my horoscope for me to feel ready,” Dupont said. “Oh — I also updated my resume.”