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Employers at career fair enthusiastic about experienced NU applicants

Overseas+Students+Services+Corporation%2C+a+multinational+corporation+that+employs+around+300+people+in+the+United+States%2C+had+a+booth+at+the+career+fair.+%0A
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Employers at career fair enthusiastic about experienced NU applicants

Overseas Students Services Corporation, a multinational corporation that employs around 300 people in the United States, had a booth at the career fair.

Overseas Students Services Corporation, a multinational corporation that employs around 300 people in the United States, had a booth at the career fair.

Bradley Fargo

Overseas Students Services Corporation, a multinational corporation that employs around 300 people in the United States, had a booth at the career fair.

Bradley Fargo

Bradley Fargo

Overseas Students Services Corporation, a multinational corporation that employs around 300 people in the United States, had a booth at the career fair.

Bradley Fargo, news correspondent

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A crowd of students in business-wear filed out of the midday chill on Feb. 14 into Cabot Center to network and find future employers.

This year and last year, the event has been split between two days, one for undergraduate students and the other for graduate students, on Thursday and Friday respectively. On both days, the Cabot Cage filled with company representatives from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. These events were open to all majors, although students needed to pre-register online a week earlier in order to get in the door.

Career fairs are nothing new to Northeastern, as the all-major career fair is a semesterly event. Similar events in previous years drew lines of students that stretched all the way past the steps of Snell Library. On Thursday, however, students had ample room to talk to more than 100 prospective employers at booths organized into a grid inside the indoor athletic facility.

Hailian Jiang graduated from Northeastern in December 2018 and went “trying to find some opportunities” after graduation.

Bradley Fargo
Hailian Jiang, a Northeastern alum, attended the career fair to try to find professional opportunities in post-graduation life.

This wasn’t her first time at one of these events, having participated in the co-op program at Northeastern. She has been to the career fair every year since she started at Northeastern, and said “the last few years there are less people” because of how the event was split into two days.

She previously went on co-op at Mentor Graphics, an electronic design automation company. While there, she went as a prospective employer to a career fair with Worcester Polytechnic Institute students. She mentioned she had seen their resumes.

“Northeastern students have more formal resumes compared to other students. Advisors help us,” Jiang said. “We have the co-op program. Co-op advisors help us to format the resume and also communicate [with employers].”

Bryant Grey-Stewart, a fifth-year mechanical engineering major, attended the fair as he prepares to finish college.

“It’s honestly just a good opportunity,” Grey-Stewart said. “It’s a chance to talk face-to-face with the people you’d be actually working with. Something you can’t get online.”

Bradley Fargo
Bryant Grey-Stewart finds the career fair to be a good place to connect with potential employers in person, rather than through a resume.

Originally, he wanted to go into aerospace. Right now, he’s looking for something electro-mechanical, robotics-oriented, ideally in Massachusetts.

“The co-op is great. Really helps you figure if you actually have any idea of what you want to do,” Grey-Stewart said. “Sometimes you think you know what you want to do. Then you do it, and your opinion changes.”

He said he had a great time chatting with the people at various booths, mentioning Boston Engineering for their friendliness. His latest co-op was at iRobot working as a robotics engineering intern. This spring marks his final semester at Northeastern; he will graduate in May.

“Where I ended up is not anticipated, but it’s a good place,” Grey-Stewart said about leaving NU.

Matt Schroeter is a second-year bioengineering major. He noticed that many potential employers are open to candidates studying various engineering majors, regardless of concentration.

Bradley Fargo
Matt Schroeter spent his time at the career fair at the booth for Geophysical Survey Systems, Inc., a company that creates ground-penetrating radar systems.

“You put a lot of pressure to choose the right major [on yourself],” Schroeter said. “I’ve been talking to these engineering companies and they’re saying a lot of the skills you learn in any engineering major are transferable.”

Among other engineering companies, Schroeter talked with representatives from Geophysical Survey Systems, Inc., a company that creates ground-penetrating radar systems.

“If you’re designing a biomedical device it’s the same as designing ground-penetrating radar,” Schroeter said. “The design skills are the same.”

A few of the tables featured signs mostly in Chinese, one of them for the Overseas Students Services Corporation, a multinational corporation that employs around 300 people in the United States and many more in China.

Bradley Fargo
Simon Chen tabled for Minty Mentors and the career fair.

Minty Mentors is the education and tutoring branch of Overseas Students Services Corporation. Simon Chen, who was tabling for Minty Mentors, said that by halfway through the day they had talked to about 20 students and were expecting more.

“We have many employees from Northeastern,” Chen said. “Last year we also attended the career fair. We got five students to become our employees. That’s great. We are expanding our business; we need more talent, especially from local Boston.”

Conrad Welzel, a project manager for public works and transportation in the city of Portland, Maine, said he talked to around 15 students by noon. The city tabled for three civil engineering positions, a transportation engineer, a surveyor and a co-op to be involved in the Geographic Information System data collection process. Most of the people who came by the booth weren’t studying civil engineering.

Bradley Fargo
Conrad Welzel, a project manager for public works and transportation in the city of Portland, Maine, shows a map to career fair attendees.

“We had a great experience last year with a student. He got to [do a project]: Park Avenue,” said Welzel. “He created a whole new bike path, he worked in taking a street and realigning the parking spaces and where the bike path was going to be so it functioned in a new role.”

This was Welzel’s first time at the fair. The co-op student the city employed the previous year worked with Jennifer Ladd, a senior transportation engineer for the public works department in Portland.

Ladd said it was worth noting that a parking-separated bike lane is “a little bit more involved” than a normal bike lane. It “required a lot of coordination with the public” because the street is heavily used by automobile traffic and has street parking.

“One of the things we will be focusing a lot this summer on is the design and reconstruction of [pedestrian] ramps to comply with federal ADA guidelines,” Ladd said.

Bradley Fargo
Jennifer Ladd works closely with co-op students during her job for the public works and transportation department in Portland.

The Americans with Disabilities Act is a piece of federal regulation that has been around since the 1990s and was most recently amended in 2008, but many nearby towns and cities are “feeling the pressure to meet these guidelines” after “someone … came with a magnifying glass and evaluated Boston,” Ladd said. One of the co-op positions would be helping to design some of those pedestrian ramps.

Meltwater, a company with eight offices in the United States and Canada, was another prospective employer. They are also working with Northeastern, providing services in the field of online media monitoring, also known as media intelligence.

Bradley Fargo
Ryan Reeves is the director of people and talent for Meltwater, a company that provides services in online media monitoring.

Ryan Reeves, the director of people and talent for Meltwater, oversees hiring in the United States and tabled at the Career Fair looking for prospects to fill sales positions who would work with executives.

”Northeastern has students who have actual experience, which is cool,” Reeves said. “As someone who’s lived in Chicago, Austin, New York, it’s a unique type of program. You do graduate with guaranteed internship experience.”

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