Saint Martin’s Career Center hosts virtual career fair

Sophia Kobernusz-Gibbs, Staff Writer

Saint Martin’s Career Center is a must-see location here on campus. The center is there for those who need someone to review their resume or to offer job advice. The Career Center staff encourages students to go to Career Fairs, etiquette dinners, or to arrange mock interviews while they are enrolled as undergraduate students. 

A piece of advice that you may hear in the Career Center is that employers are inclined to hire people they know. Going to a Career Fair and putting yourself out there is a great way to start building your network. However, you may start asking yourself, “ How can I go to a Career Fair amid a pandemic? Isn’t that dangerous?”. The Career Center has a solution by providing online options that you may browse, all from the safety of your desk. 

Over the summer, those in the Career Center sought out ways to aid students in their search for a job, either during or after their education at Saint Martin’s. During this time, Handshake, an online hiring platform that is used by the university, started to develop a Virtual Career Fair platform. Seattle Pacific University and the University of Puget Sound reached out to Saint Martin’s Career Center and inquired about partnering up for a Virtual Career Fair. 

This event brought a lot of amazing opportunities with it. With over 70 employers, Saint Martin’s, Seattle Pacific’s, and Puget Sound’s student bodies had a plethora of opportunities. Alyssa Nastasi, assistant Director of the Career Center talks about the opportunities available to students through this online partnership. “Students were able to talk to employers that would normally have not attended an in-person fair like Amazon or Google Tech,” Nastasi said. Nastasi reported that as a whole, Saint Martin’s students went to 146 group sessions and 119 of the individual sessions. 

Handshake has only had the Virtual Fair option for about two months, so it is still new and open for improvement. However, Nastasi is excited for the future with this newfound resource. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Currently on Handshake, students can go to their “Events” tab and attend virtual events individually from employers they are interested in. Nastasi is excited for what this means for students searching for jobs in the future. Nastasi states, “I believe that we will continue to have a Virtual Fair, even when we return to some semblance of normal.” A virtual fair provides convenient access to both students and employers. However, it costs money and time to travel for in-person Career Fairs. With Virtual Career Fair, this cuts cost and broadens the reach for everyone involved– universities and employers alike. 

The Career Center is planning on holding another Virtual Career Fair this upcoming spring. Handshake is improving the software for both employers and students, making it easier than ever to be searching for a job. If you need job advice, help with your resume, or want to know more about the working world, stop by the Career Center in Old Main 257 or email Assistant Director Alyssa Nastasi or Director Ann Adams. 

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