Each year, Western Michigan University holds five job fairs in February. This year, WMU continued the tradition with an all virtual version.
There are several events WMU students can attend. The Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) job fair will be held Feb. 10, and the career fair is Feb. 11, which encompasses all other programs outside of STEM. The final fair of the month, the government and non-profit job fair, is Feb. 18.
There are two systems participating parties can use for the job fairs: Handshake and Easy Virtual Fair.
Handshake is where potential employers register and indicate what they are hiring for. Every WMU student has access to Handshake through their school accounts. While Easy Virtual Fair is the platform used on the day of the fair. Students and employers both login and are able to talk to each other.
This week! Get ready!! pic.twitter.com/Kjd2QAFegm— WMU Engagement (@WMU_Engage) February 8, 2021
Employer Engagement Assistant Amanda Jeppesen said she began contacting employers in September for the job fairs.
“I recommend everybody participates,” Jeppesen said. “The activity that you participate in will vary based on what level you are in school. For example, a first-year student would go with the intent of becoming comfortable with the job fair so that when you are an older student your way more comfortable talking with employers.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused many campus events to become virtual. It also impacted the career fair format, but many employers are still willing to participate, Jeppesen said.
“More often than not, what they (employers) said was, I can’t hire right now, but I’m still coming to campus because I want Western students to know that we are here for them,” Jeppesen explained. “Realistically, most employers were still hiring and continued with their plans for internships and full-time jobs.”