Annual career fair provides opportunities for students and employers

Black and gold banners set the background for introductions and opportunities at the MU Arts and Science and College of Agriculture, Food and Natural resources career fair. There were students looking polished and professional handing out resumes to employers of all kinds. For many students, this was their first time networking for potential jobs and internships.

According to sophomore Andrea Unterbrink, animal science major, the career fair was, “Very informative,” and a great experience.

This was Unterbrink’s first time attending a career fair. She was looking for opportunities that could lead to a summer internship in her field. Specifically, she was excited to talk to Land O’ Lakes and MFA. But she felt like she came prepared. Unterbrink said that in her animal science careers class she had spent time writing resumes and cover letters intended to leave a lasting impression with employers. Many of the employers there recognized the hard work of students leading up to the fair.

Diane Slater, the representative for the Missouri Pork Association, said CAFNR students have potential.

“CAFNR is bringing bright students to the workforce,” Slater said.

Slater has been coming to the CAFNR/Arts and Science career fair for 16 years. And the pool of applicants that CAFNR provides is what brings her back. She said that through the career fair they are able to reach a lot of students who could work for an agriculture organization. Slater isn’t the only one who has this opinion.

Gina Raines, a representative from Commerce Bank, said that she is pleased with the wide mix of backgrounds the students have.

“I’m always amazed at the variety of students,” Raines said.

This was Raines’ third year coming to the career fair and she was looking for students, especially agriculture students, to get their foot in the door.

“There are a lot of openings for the agriculture world in banking,” Raines said.

The diversity of employers brings in different types of students too. Agribusiness management freshman, Mackenzie Claypoole went to the career fair looking for a potential summer internship.

“I’m not looking for anything in particular,” Claypoole said. “I have time to find a job more specific.”

Claypoole said that she was looking to gain experience in her field. She, like Unterbrink, had spent time preparing in her classes on resume writing and learning how to engage with potential employers.

Efforts like this did not go unnoticed by the various employers. Raines said that she specifically looks for students with good people skills. Especially students who have taken part in FFA and 4H. Raines said that skills like those are transferable to the working world. Slater said that she tries to find students who take initiative in their work and can bring something to the table.

From freshmen to seniors, connections were being made all around.