With summer internships in the past and potential careers in the near future, Bucknell students have begun their journey to discover where they see themselves after graduation. On Sept. 19, more than 750 students took the opportunity to network with various employers at this year's Employer Expo in Gerhard Fieldhouse.
Organized by the Career Development Center (CDC), the 2017 Expo hosted 106 organizations. They ranged in size from Girls on the Run of Greater Susquehanna Valley, a local nonprofit, to well-known names such as Deloitte and ExxonMobil. Pam Keiser, executive director of career services at the CDC, discussed the benefits of attending the early-fall event.
"Speaking with these representatives helps students explore opportunities at different industries and organizations and learn how they may fit with their academic backgrounds and experiences," Keiser said. "It is also an excellent way to make important networking connections with the many Bucknell alumni who returned to campus."
For some employers, the Expo was their first experience recruiting at Bucknell. "When the CDC reached out to ask if we were interested in participating in the Expo, I was excited to join," said Scott Williams, an engineering manager for one of Procter & Gamble's Pennsylvania locations. "I see a great opportunity, especially in the engineering program, to reach untapped talent in the local area."
Students could be seen waiting in line to meet with their preferred companies, adjusting their business attire and portfolios in anticipation of making a solid first impression. While positive introductions are critical, Williams emphasized the importance of practicing proactive qualities in the workplace. "We are looking for candidates who are self-starters — people who will not only rise to the challenge on a difficult task, but will also go the extra mile to dig deeper into problems that may appear easier than they are," he said.
For returning employers, certain qualities of Bucknellians draw them back to recruit on campus. "What we're looking for are people who can think critically and communicate effectively," said Rebecca Bruelman, a senior research analyst at Nielsen. "At a school like Bucknell, you're more likely to find students who have learned to think this way throughout their college education."
Michelle Choe '18, who majors in markets, innovation & design, is an Undergraduate Executive Intern in the Division of Communications.