Career fair offers jobs for students

Release Date: 10/11/2006

Ozarks students examine possibilities for careers and graduate study.

CLARKSVILLE, ARK. (October 11, 2006) -- Options for post-graduation employment or study lined the halls of the student center on the Ozarks campus Wednesday at Ozarks’ annual fall semester career fair.

Representatives of employers and graduate schools offered advice as well as information on possibilities with their respective organizations.

“If what we have is not in line with (students’) goals, I’ll direct them to another program we have,” said Beth Johnson from the graduate school of business at Oral Roberts University in Tulsa, Okla.

Students today have more options, Johnson said, pointing out that Oral Roberts offers two types of business degrees, including one offered by distance learning, allowing students to complete the majority of their coursework online, without having to relocate to another university campus.

Even in an era of online job applications, career fairs are still a valuable tool for students.

“It’s that face-to-face contact,” said Kimberly Spicer of Ozarks’ Career Services Office, which sponsored the career fair. Spicer said many Ozarks students have used the university’s career fairs to land their first job after graduation, with many finding positions near their hometowns or in areas where they wish to relocate.

“We’re heavily recruiting for Northwest Arkansas,” said Chantelle Fluker of Enterprise Rent-A-Car, which offers graduates a management training program, in locations around Arkansas and neighboring states.

“After six months, you’re eligible to get promoted,” said Fluker. “After that, the sky’s the limit!” She said some recruits have gone on to manage an Enterprise branch office, while others have risen through the ranks of general management.

Both Fluker and Johnson noted that a student’s undergraduate major would not weigh heavily on the hiring or admissions process at their respective company or school, saying that interest and effort were important qualifications.

“We look for students who are mobile and want to move up,” Fluker said.

Other companies at the career fair included Arvest Bank, Walt Disney World and the Arkansas Department of Health and Human Services, as well as military recruiters and graduate schools in Arkansas and Oklahoma.

Spicer said Ozarks students will have another opportunity for one-on-one interviews with recruiters in February, when the university sponsors a trip to Little Rock for job interviews with companies in manufacturing, finance and retail trade, as well as government employers.