Job & Internships Fair offers students opportunity to connect with employers

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Michael Taromina, Assistant News Editor

Nothing is more overwhelming to college students than pondering their future after four years of immense fun and unforgettable memories.

For many, the word ‘job’ comes to mind. And while the trials and tribulations of pursuing work experience in any type of field are undoubtedly real, employees at the Center for Career Advancement at Bucknell say they are here to assist students’ needs and worries.

One exciting project the CCA regularly holds is a Job & Internship Fair, this past one being held on Feb. 7 in Gerhard Fieldhouse. 

Alison Ordonez, the Director of Employer Relations & Engagement for the CCA, played an integral role in the planning process of the fair—a process that she said took time, effort and a lot of due diligence. 

“Career fair planning is an entire office wide effort, even more so a campus wide effort,” Ordonez said. 

The CCA worked very closely with campus partners such as Events Management, Dining Services, Facilities, Print, Publication & Mail (PPM), Athletics and Public Safety, in addition to the three colleges to ensure this event could run smoothly.

The planning of the Job & Internship Fair took place nearly nine months ago, as “we take into consideration other campus wide events, holidays, industry hiring timelines and the academic calendar,” Ordonez said.

For this particular fair, weather posed the biggest potential challenge since it is held early in the spring semester. 

“We always build in a ‘snow date’ in case we need to postpone due to inclement weather, but the weather looks like it will cooperate this year. We have only had to use the ‘snow date’ on one occasion in the past,” Ordonez said. 

From Teach to America to CitiBank to Pennsylvania State Auditor to U.S. Army Healthcare Recruiting, there were certainly a wide variety of job and internship choices to choose from. More information about the jobs can be found by reaching out to the CCA for a spreadsheet that includes each attendee

The floorplan was laid out with each career opportunity getting a table, as seen in this map of the tables. 

The CCA has moved away from the long standing trend of only hosting 1-2 large scale fairs per semester encompassing all majors and classes to offering several smaller industry focused events throughout the year. These on and off campus and virtual events will be offered in alignment with industry specific hiring timelines throughout the academic year and will partner with the CCA to offer additional industry focused programming for students. 

There have been many ways the CCA has advertised this event around and outside of campus including the use of emails and social media, specifically Instagram takeovers with an alum or employer, such as Caldwell Harden ’19 with AlphaSights and a CCA student intern Rute Pires ’25.

Additionally, the CCA wrote weekly student newsletters from the Engineering College and Freeman College of Management, while relying on faculty and staff relationships and word of mouth. 

There are additional ways to learn about job experience within Bucknell for students that do not want to attend the job fair. By using Handshake, students can be looking at industry specific as well as general recruiting websites for job and internship opportunities. 

“Companies hire in different ways and at different times of year, with some in the early fall and others in the late spring, depending on their industries,” Ordonez said. “Some companies are highly engaged with college campuses and come on campus while others only post on their company website.” 

All of these intricacies in the job and internship search can at times be overwhelming, so the CCA encourages students to join the Industry Career Communities, attend CCA programming, enroll in the UNIV 175 Career Course and utilize the coaching appointments with CCA interns and staff, which can be done through Handshake.

Additionally, staying informed from the CCA through emails or social media (follow @BucknellCareer on Instagram) and making an activated Handshake account is crucial.

In an activated Handshake account, students can “update career interests and join a career community, explore career paths and search for opportunities relevant to your interests, follow companies and get automatic emails if they post an opportunity or host an event and sign up for events and career fairs,” Ordonez said. 

In addition to Bucknell specific events, there are also hundreds of virtual events hosted by companies that you have an interest in or on a topic you want to learn more about. If in doubt, connect with the Center for Career Advancement, as they are there to help.

“We want to make sure that students know how, when and where to search for opportunities based upon their individual career interests and goals in order to be successful,” Ordonez said. 

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