(Alexis Gable/MJ)

By HARSHAL BHOSALE, Student Life Editor

The College of Engineering and Computer Science (CECS) at University of Michigan-Dearborn, through its Experiential Learning Program, hosted its first career fair of 2017 at the Fairlane Campus (Quad E) on Feb. 2 for CECS students seeking a Summer or Fall co-op experience. Over 25 companies made their presence felt on this occasion, giving the budding professionals glimpses into the burgeoning job opportunities in the market.

Considering that a career fair is one of the foremost avenues for student-employer relationships to build up, UM-Dearborn leads the way in arranging several of these over the course of the academic year, with the CECS event attracting many top automotive and software companies to campus. Students attended the event in large numbers, putting their best foot forward to learn about the opportunities presented by participating companies and honing their networking skills.

Echoing the enthusiasm shown by students, industry representatives too shared their views on how they perceive the professionals of tomorrow.

Melissa Rayos of Human Resources at Bosch, one of the companies with longer queues, commented, “It’s good to see such a good footfall, it shows that students are taking their careers seriously and are taking the initiative to reach out and grab opportunities.” When asked about what improvements students could undertake, she said, “If the student receives a list of the companies that are coming in, I recommend they make a note of them and do some online research about them. Some students don’t and then they’re unsure of who to talk to; it’s better to come with a plan.”

The diverse participant list meant that students have the choice to go for bigger, more established companies, as well as newer start-ups seeking to grow exponentially.

Articulating his views, John Shuell, Principal of LogicDrop said, “When hiring developers, we have a slightly different process. We like to see passion in their field of choice. If somebody comes to me and hands me a one-pager that’s just got classes on it, I tend to worry. I want to see whether they like to work on something at home, even if it’s just modding (modifying) a game. I don’t mind if you got the Python experience in the class or on your own time, I just want to know that you know the language and you like coding.” Such perspectives from people in the industry are certainly helpful for students to gauge the requirements of hiring managers.

The CECS Co-Op Job Fair was impactful for all concerned, and will hopefully help many students find that dream job they’re looking for.