Job fairs are a big part of the spring semester on any community college campus. Those events looked a little different this spring but delivered the same value to students and employers who attended them.
Alese Campbell, Business and Entrepreneurship Regional Director in the Central Valley/Mother Lode Region, was impressed by the work that several colleges in the region put into planning and executing virtual job fairs over the past few weeks.
Bakersfield College started recruiting season with a Virtual Recruitment Day on April 22. The event drew more than 100 participants and included 16 employers ranging from Starbucks to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Students had the opportunity to meet hiring managers from each organization and inquire about open positions.
Freddie Rodriguez, the college’s Job Development Specialist, said everything went smoothly, and everyone enjoyed the experience.
“We have already received feedback from our partners who felt the event was a success and are excited to participate again,” Rodriguez said. Bakersfield College led the way for others in the region and shared their best practices and resource documents.
West Hills College Lemoore adopted a similar approach for its Virtual Job Fair on May 1. The event featured six employers including Northrop Grumman and O’Neill Vinters and Distillers. Each organization had its own Zoom breakout room, and students could move from room to room and talk with employers that interested them.
“This helped our students grow their interview skills and also created a one-on-one space for employers to get to know our students,” said Tamara Warren, CTE Coordinator at West Hills College Lemoore.
San Joaquin Delta College’s Virtual Student Job Fair on May 7 drew more than 200 attendees for 30-minute sessions with 40 employers throughout the day. The CTE & Workforce Development team is ready for round two, as 60% of students and employers rated the event as “excellent.” The Virtual Student Job Fair hosted by the CTE & Workforce Development team, including RD Campbell, was a collaboration with five local chambers of commerce, WorkNet and the Delta College Success Coaches. More than 400 new students and 35 new employers enrolled in the Jobspeaker database for the event, which allows the college to continue working with them moving forward.