September 29, 2022

Summer Job/Volunteer Fair ’22 Review

The Career Center held its first in-person job fair since the COVID-19 pandemic from 1-4 p.m. on Thursday, April 14, 2022.

With 24 organization booths across Smith and Albany Hall, the fair offered an opportunity for students to explore their options for summer positions. Many of the attending organizations are based in the Portland area, while others are national with offices in Portland. Across the fair, there were 13 booths looking to fill paid positions and 18 volunteering opportunities, with some organizations seeking both.


The bright environment of Smith and Albany welcomed students into the fair. The event was bustling with students and employers chatting about mission statements and position responsibilities. Students were able to connect with organizations over shared values and goals, forming networks of opportunity for the summer.


Job fairs are a great chance for students to interact with organizations and learn more about the types of positions and work environments that are out there. Especially in college, when jobs and careers can seem so distant and overwhelming, job fairs help students familiarize themselves with what organizations are actually like.


While the perfect employer might not have been there for everyone, the fair still presented a chance for students to practice professional mannerisms and behaviors. Learning about professional skills, such as the perfect handshake or how to ask open-ended questions, is a vital aspect of a well-rounded education, as it prepares students for the real world. Job fairs allow students to become more comfortable with interacting with employers and pitching themselves.


Job searches are not only relevant after completing your education. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average person has 12.4 jobs between the ages of 18 and 54. This means that you will most likely be on the hunt for a job throughout your life. The skills you build at job fairs now will be used for the rest of your life as you navigate job searches over the years.


The Summer Job/Volunteer Fair was a chance for students to explore current opportunities in Portland and practice skills for future job hunts. If you are looking to continue learning about opportunities, we encourage students to visit the Career Center for drop ins or make an appointment with a Career Counselor to discuss their time at the fair and next steps.


Isabel Kjaer,

2024, Psychology