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Letter to the editor

Career Fair brings many different businesses to campus

October 24, 2013

In response to the Student Voice’s Oct. 18, editorial, I would like to express my concern that the UW-River Falls Annual Career Fair is not an “agriculture fair” as mentioned. The 22nd annual Career Fair was a great success with 87 companies registered and more than 500 attendees. Many faculty, staff and students are not aware of the process utilized in order to gain company attendance at this event.

The first step in the Career Fair invitation process is to ask students who they would like to see attend the fair. This is done by asking this question on the Career Fair evaluation, which is used to develop new company leads for the following year. A request is also posted in Falcon Daily asking faculty, students and staff who they would like to see invited. Finally, an email invitation list is developed and more than 10,000 individuals working at more than 9,000 companies are invited to attend the fair.

Because the event is first-come first-serve, it is the companies who register first that are final attendees at the fair. Also, there is a limit to the companies able to fit in the space provided and this year, 22 companies were on the formal wait list. Of those 22, five were considered agriculture companies. Of the 87 attendees at the 2013 fair, 32 are what we would consider non-ag companies. Also, in my opinion, companies that many students consider to be “ag” also require accountants, marketing executives, communications specialists, scientists, CEOs, CFOs, etc., and are viable internship locations and have job possibilities for most students.

Please remember that UWRF Career Services has partnered with six of the top 100 companies listed on the CNN Fortune 500 list over that last two years. This may not be only via the Career Fair as these companies visit campus during Mock Interview Day, the Networking Social, Etiquette Dinners, and many times, are sponsors at these events. Those companies are Wal-Mart, Wells Fargo, ADM, Dupont, Target and CHS, all of whom had many non-ag related jobs posted on their companies hiring website when I checked on Oct. 21.

Melissa Wilson
Director
UW-River Falls Career Services