From medical device and pharmaceutical firms, to construction and engineering companies, to major global fashion brands, some 50 employers attended the Fall Career and Internship Fair on East Falls Campus on Sept. 27.
“We’re thrilled with the quality of companies who have taken the time to come to the University to recruit our students,” said Ainsley Maloney, associate director of industry relations at Jefferson (Philadelphia University + Thomas Jefferson University). “It’s such a great kick-off to the semester.”
Construction management senior Jeryln Mathew was among the 250 students who attended the fair at the Gallagher Center. He sought a full-time project engineer position for after graduation.
“The job fair is such a great opportunity for students to find companies they’re interested in and show them why they deserve to be there,” he said. “Any opportunity you get, you have to take.”
Fashion merchandising and management senior Miranda Braun has utilized Jefferson’s career services since her freshman year. She attended the job fair looking for an internship next semester and a full-time job post-graduation.
“Being able to speak with employers face to face is essential to building relationships now—and in the future,” Braun said.
Fashion design junior Anna Hutchinson, who also attended the recent career-focused pop-up shop on campus, had her eye on 2019 and beyond as well.
“I want to become confident with talking to employers for internship opportunities but also to become comfortable for next year when I’m looking for a full-time position,” she said. “I’m excited to reach out to these amazing companies and put my name out there.”
For representatives from the firms in attendance, the feeling was mutual.
“Jefferson students are passionate and ready to take on a challenge,” said Kate Montesano, Mid-Atlantic regional assistant for Gap. “They easily adapt to the culture in our stores and are usually promoted quickly after graduation into management roles. Jefferson students are highly motivated and really stand out to us compared to other universities.”
Montesano began working at Gap as a part-time sales associate during her freshman year at Jefferson, and before graduation, she interned with the company. After Montesano graduated in 2015, she was offered a full-time management position and steadily climbed the ladder.
At the job fair, Gap was looking for seasonal and part-time sales associates, specialists, keyholders, and part- and full-time assistant managers, said Montesano, who also earned her iMBA from Jefferson in 2017. Gap shared info on its corporate internship programs in San Francisco as well.
In its first year recruiting at Jefferson, Catalent Pharma Solutions sought students interested in project management and engineering for its Philadelphia site’s summer internship program, said Laurel Draeger, manager of university and early talent programs.
“We want students excited to accelerate their careers in an entrepreneurial, fast-paced and inclusive environment and students who can apply critical thinking, share outside-of-the-box ideas, articulate creative solutions and are willing to be challenged,” she said.
Shannon Geddes, university relations partner at QVC, also looked for passionate candidates ready to hit the ground running for positions in fashion merchandising, design, marketing and ecommerce.
Students with a drive for public service stood out for non-legal internships and clerk typist and legal assistant positions at the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General, said Alixandra Eichelberger, internship program coordinator. “We offer students an inside look at what it takes to protect and defend the people of the Commonwealth.”
Once again, over two-thirds of the employers who attended the Career Fair have hired a student in the past three years for full-time jobs or internships, said Jefferson’s Maloney.
“This shows they’ve had successful outcomes and rely on events like this to meet top talent,” she said. “Our main goal is to solidify the connections made here today, so we’ve encouraged employers to sign up for an interview day and offer students on-the-spot invitations to formally interview with them on campus later in the semester.”
All Jefferson students or alumni interested in healthcare jobs—including provider, administrator and researcher positions—also can attend the Center City Fall Career Fair on Monday, Oct. 1 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Jefferson Alumni Hall.
Approximately 50 employers will be present, such as Jefferson, Christiana Care, Crozer-Keystone, Fox Chase Cancer Center and the U.S. State Department Bureau of Medical Services.
Registration for students through HireJefferson is recommended but not required.
“Review the employer list in HireJefferson, research the employers of interest so you have good, individualized questions for them, have your elevator pitch ready, and follow up with each employer after the fair,” advised Chris Miciek, director of Center City’s Career Development Center, adding career fairs don’t just benefit graduating students launching their job searches. “They’re great ways to explore career options, too.”