Tech's Fall Career Fair sets record

Sep 28, 2012 | General News

Louisiana Tech’s Counseling and Career Services hosted a Career Fair Thursday and drew a record number of companies to the event.
One hundred thirty-seven companies and between 700-800 students attended the Career Fair. Companies hoped to attract the university’s soon-to-be graduates, and students hoped to find employment.
Ron Cathey, director of Counseling and Career Services, said he had not expected this many companies to attend.

Photo by Brandy McKnight -- One hundred thirty-seven booths were set up to interview soon to be graduates.

“Back in the summer, we decided to expand to the upstairs of the Student Center (as well as the downstairs) to alleviate congestion, but we did not expect more than 110 companies,” Cathey said. “Next thing we  knew, not only did we fill the space, but we had to add tables that we took away.”
Cathey attributes the growth of the Career Fair to the inclusion of graduate programs as well as assistance from individuals connected with the university. Dr. Les Guice, executive vice president for research and development; Dr. Paul Hale, director of industrial relations at Tech; and Debbie Inman, coordinator of entrepreneurial studies, also helped connect with companies to encourage them to hire Tech students, Cathey said.
“The Career Center staff did an excellent job of planning and organizing the event,” Hale said. “It was one of their most successful in recent years.”
Jack Hawkins of Intralox Corporation said Tech always produces some of their best employees.
“This is always a good place to come and get good candidates,” Hawkins said.
Many of the companies were looking to hire more people this year than this time last year, Cathey said.
“We’re looking to hire more people than last year and looking especially for engineers,” said Avery Howard, an engineering supervisor with Baxter Health Care in Cleveland, Miss. “At Baxter, we often place recent engineering grads into supervisory positions immediately after graduation. Engineering remains a high priority for us and Tech is always a good place to come. All of the students come to the fair well-prepared, dressed professionally and are not shy about speaking up.”
Having more companies in attendance, many students said they felt more optimistic about the job outlook after graduation.
“There are a lot more opportunities this year than in the past,” said Rachel Delatte, a senior mechanical engineering major. “Usually I come with 15 resumes and only leave behind half of them. This year, I came with 15 and gave away all but three of them. It seems as if they pretty much have opportunities for everyone, not just engineers, this year as well.”
Written by Catherine Fraser, Brandy McKnight and Judith Roberts