Assayer of Student Opinion.

The Prospector

Assayer of Student Opinion.

The Prospector

Assayer of Student Opinion.

The Prospector

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Career Expo this week

Life after graduation can be a scary thought to many, if not all, college students. Finding a job is not an easy task. That is why the University Career Center is hosting its annual Career Expo on Sept. 17 and 18 at the Don Haskins Center.

It is an opportunity for students of all majors and classifications to interact with more than 130 companies that could help shape both their immediate and long-term future. Whether it is to find a job or simply gather useful information, Betsabe Castro Duarte, director of the University Career Center, encourages all UTEP students to take advantage of this unique opportunity.

“We’ve had a steady increase over the last few years,” Castro Duarte said. “Five years ago, we only had 88 employers, so we’re really excited that our numbers are really high up.”

UCC hosts various job fairs throughout the school year, but the Career Expo is the largest and broadest of them all. It aims to benefit all kinds of students, from freshmen to seniors, from all kinds of majors, from the sciences to liberal arts. The range of employers that will be in attendance includes companies like Exxon Mobile and Hewlett Packard, to iHeart Media, to Sherwin Williams, Walmart and even various departments on campus such as the Academic Advising Center.

Junior biology major Cassie Jimenez has attended the expo in previous years and will be in attendance this year.

“It’s been really fun,” Jimenez said. “You have a wide variety of employers of employers and its a great opportunity to find a job or an internship.”

The expo is scheduled at this time of the year because, according to Castro Duarte, it is exactly when employers are looking for potential hires.

“This is the recruiting season for companies,” Castro Duarte said. “They start looking for you now so they can either pick you up in January or in June.”

It is the perfect time to establish a relationship with potential employers; a relationship that can be further developed during the more specific job fairs that UCC has planned for later in the school year.

The Graduate and Professional School Fair, scheduled for Sept. 30, as well as fairs aimed specifically for liberal arts and business majors and for engineers and the sciences, which are scheduled for the spring are helpful as well. But none of them provide the wide range and exposure of this first career fair of the year.

Even the Internship and Part-Time Fair, which is also aimed at all majors, has a more specific focus.

“The focus of the Internship and Part Time Fair is only for any summer jobs that might be available,” Castro Duarte said.

Finding a job does not have to be the only purpose for attending the Career Expo. It is an event that can prove useful for the future. For students, who are still in the early stages of their education, networking and simply gathering information about the different options and paths that exist toward a job in the many different majors offered at the university are two other benefits of attending.

Speaking to employers about different positions and their personal experience in school and the job market could be of much assistance to students.

“We expect over 300 representatives that are available for you to do an informational interview,” Castro Duarte said.

In an effort to help students break the ice, UCC will provide all employers that are in attendance and are UTEP graduates with an orange ribbon. The idea is to create a starting point in a conversation that could lead to valuable information concerning students’ majors, career paths and employment opportunities.

“We do this very purposefully so that it creates an opportunity for our students to talk to the employers,” Castro Duarte said.

The expo will start at 9 a.m. and end at 2 p.m. on Thursday and Friday, with some employers attending one or both days. The entire list of employers, the specific day or days they are scheduled to attend and the majors they are interested in is available on JobMine, which can be found at the UCC website.

Preparation is key when attending the event. Castro Duarte estimates that a student should spend around two hours at the fair, after researching the various companies the student might be interested in.

When it comes to attire, students should dress appropriately as well.

“Take sensible shoes, look professional, look nice,” Castro Duarte said. “It’s not a date, but look nice.”

UCC can also provide help to those who might not have clothing for the occasion. They have business clothes that students can borrow, free of charge, for the occasion at their office. The UCC is located at 103 Union West.  For more information and a list of employers for the expo, visit or call 747-5730.

Luis Gonzalez may be reached at [email protected].

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Career Expo this week