UNC Greensboro 2023 Spring Career Fair Returns to In-Person Format

Aidan Van Nynatten

News Writer

On Tuesday, Feb. 21, the Spring Career Fair returned to UNCG after having gone virtual during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the last in-person fair taking place in 2019. The fair was held in the Kaplan Center to an impressive turnout, and offered an equally impressive diversity of opportunities for professional development. Summer internships and both part-time and full-time jobs alike were being promoted by the featured employers. 

An array of different career fields was represented in the fair, providing opportunities to a multitude of different major types to begin developing connections in their respective fields. Among them were retailers, with grocery chains such as Lowe’s Foods and Aldi, clothing brands such as Kohl’s and Lee, and even car manufacturers such as Volvo sending representatives to share information about opportunities. Also among the professions accommodated by the fair was education, with several cross-county school systems sending associates to engage with students looking for scholastic employment experience. These counties include but are not limited to Guilford, Forsyth, Wake, Mecklenburg, Durham and Alamance. Also among the educational career paths with correspondents in attendance were various AmeriCorps entities, such as CityYear and ArtistYear. 

Cross-county representation was also present in the form of law enforcement correspondents, with Buncombe, Alamance and Mecklenburg police departments all being featured in the fair. On a related note, there was also a noteworthy presence of government organizations with their own setups. These included organizations at every level, from local/municipal to state all the way up to federal. At the local level was the Guilford County government, NC Departments of Revenue and Commerce at the state level, and entities such as the US Border Patrol at the federal level. 

Beyond that, the healthcare industry was a participant in the fair as well, with Novant Health featured, along with Daymark Recovery Services, a psychiatric service, and AuthoraCare, a hospice service. In addition to representatives from tech companies like Spectrum, environmental institutions were also present at the fair, such as the North Carolina State Park system.

It wasn’t only career opportunities being displayed at the fair. There was also a notable presence of other universities with information about graduate programs for prospective students. These included Wake Forest University, NC State University, East Carolina University and Meredith College. Alongside these was the College Advising Corps to share information about how to handle inequitable admissions processes.

Upon entering the fair, attendants were greeted with an informational table offering advice on how to optimize their experience and upon leaving were asked to fill out surveys to help give the coordinators of the event ideas on how to improve the experience, something especially important now that the event has been virtual for the past several years.

The career fair has seen notable growth over the past several years. This year, the spring fair hosted 116 employers, up from 105 in 2019 and 2020 and 54 in the 2021 virtual session. As for fall fairs, the event saw its peak in 2019, with a total of 88 employers participating, with the most recent fair promoting only 77. With that said, this year’s upcoming fall fair will be the first in-person one since 2019, and a significant spike in employer engagement is expected. As a general trend, the virtual fairs have attracted fewer employers, but the event will most likely continue to expand from now. As it continues to grow, space will likely become an issue for the fair. It has been held in the Kaplan Center for the past several years, but the double court gym in which it is held is noticeably crowded during the event and, as previously mentioned, the event is expected to grow further, so the Career & Professional Development Center is currently coordinating with the Kaplan Center in the hopes of utilizing a larger space in future years. Additionally, smaller career fairs such as the Part-Time Job Fair are held in the Elliott University Center. Career fairs have been put on at UNCG ever since the Career & Professional Development Center has existed as a campus entity, as it is standard practice for such entities to organize fairs in order to advertise job opportunities and encourage networking for students.

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