© Times-Herald photo by Lisa Goudy
Chuck LaBrash, instrumentation foreman at the McArthur River mine site for Cameco, chats with SIAST office education student Mara Riddell about employment opportunities at the 34th annual SIAST Palliser Campus career fair on Feb. 5, 2014.
Annual SIAST career fair reaches vendor capacity
Mara Riddell didn’t realize just how many career possibilities there were until Wednesday’s career fair at SIAST.
“I didn’t even know that there were this many companies,” she said. “It’s really informative actually.”
She was one of many students who came out to the 34th annual career fair at SIAST Palliser Campus. Currently enrolled in a one-year office education program, Riddell had never been to a career fair before but liked what she saw.
“There’s a lot of job postings that are available,” she said. “They’re giving out a lot of cards and application forms.”
The fair had 94 employers, which is the maximum capacity of vendors the campus can hold. The career fair has had 94 vendors for the last five years.
“In the fall we offered, for the first time only, a technology only career fair so we thought maybe it would make a difference for this one, but it hasn’t,” said Holli Bell, SIAST’s coordinator of student employment services. “We’ve still sold out again this year and a lot of those ones that came in November to the technology-only one are here again for this one.”
She said students graduate in December and April and so it’s a benefit to the employers to come to both career fairs because there are different students.
Wednesday’s career fair included a variety of employers for all of the students at SIAST.
“It's for all the programs that we offer here,” said Bell. “It's a really good opportunity for the students. They get to know the companies. They get to know what they're about.”
She estimated between 1,000 and 1,200 students on campus attended the career fair.
“All of our technology programs are mandatory co-operative education. So then our first years, they're going through the interview process for their first job because they have a work term," said Bell. “They get to meet their employer that they signed up to have an interview with. They get to meet them face to face and talk to people who actually work for them.”
Amanda Friesen, human resources manager with Daytona Homes Master Builder, said their booth was quite busy during the day.
“We are always kind of recruiting young, new ideas to come into our company. We’re hiring architectural technologists and carpenters right now. That’s mainly what we’re looking for,” she said. “Most of our recent hires have actually been out of this school and we’ve had a lot of really good success with all of them. They just really train them to be professional and all the skills they need.”
She said Daytona Hoes Master Builder was at the Saskatoon SIAST career fair last week and will be at the Regina SIAST career fair on Thursday.
Friesen added the career fairs are beneficial to recruiting new employees.
“It gets our name out there to recent grads and also to potential homebuyers that might be interested in building with us one day. It gets us to meet lots of really great candidates,” she said. “We get to actually do a quick two-minute interview with them while we’re here. So it’s a good way to kind of gauge if they’re going to fit our team or not.”
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