Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Career fairs offer more than 170 employers

CW / Reagan Christian

The Career Center partners with students as they explore possibilities, develop skills and connect with opportunities related to their professional endeavors. Students can seek guidance selecting a major, planning a career, developing job-search strategies, honing interview skills, creating a resume, planning for professional school and more. 

Career fairs are an ideal setting to recruit for both full-time positions and internships. Students of all classifications, as well as alumni, can attend.  

The General Interest and Business Career Fair will be Wednesday, Sept. 27, and the Technical and Engineering Career Fair will be Thursday, Sept. 28.  Both events will be held in Coleman Coliseum from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Registration is preferred but not required to attend the events. Registration allows students to receive reminders and additional preparation information. 

On the day of the fair, attendees will receive both a physical and digital program with a map detailing the booth locations. The digital map includes interactive features that allow users to see employers around a specific location in real time and examine additional information about them. 

On the days of the career fair, UA parking guidelines will still be enforced. Transportation options include Southeast Commuter parking, which is available in the Coleman Coliseum lot and Capstone Deck, or Crimson Ride, which will be dropping off and picking up in front of the coliseum. 

Harley Sabbagh, the events coordinator at the UA Career Center, emphasized the opportunities for all students on campus.  

“Students can expect lots of employers. The engineering fair is the biggest fair UA has had to date,” Sabbagh said. “Typically, there are between 130 and 150 employers on site. This year we are at max capacity at 170 employers. Similar for the general interest fair.” 

A list of registered employers is available through Handshake and can be filtered by full-time and part-time opportunities as well as majors and classifications. Some of the employers in attendance include Aerojet Rocketdyne, the Alabama Department of Revenue, ALFA Insurance, Amazon, American Cast Iron Pipe Company, Belk, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama, BMW Manufacturing, Brasfield & Gorrie, Burns & McDonnell, Chevron, Dell Technologies, Dynetics, Eastman Chemical, the FBI, FedEx Services, GE Appliances, Georgia-Pacific, International Paper, Lockheed Martin, Mercedes-Benz, the National Security Agency, Nucor, Southern Company, Southwest Airlines, and many more.   

Career Fair Crash Courses are also available to help students prepare for the event.  

“Career fair staff sit down with students and go through how to prepare, what to wear and resources. The ability to sign up to attend a Career Fair Crash Course is available in Handshake and through the website,” Sabbagh said.  

There are currently eight available crash course options, including virtual and in-person opportunities. The courses begin on Sept. 15. 

When students attend a career fair, the Career Center suggests starting with an elevator pitch.  

“Employers want to see the casual and professional side while conversing with students,” Sabbagh said. “Many employers stay on campus the day after the fairs for on-campus interviews.”  

The best ways to be prepared for the career fair include dressing professionally, bringing printed resumes, and researching employers through their individual websites and on Handshake. Additionally, having a profile already set up on both Handshake and Career Fair Plus can save time and provide an interactive method for locating recruiters and planning which companies to visit. 

Many employers are available on the basketball court as well as around the concourse area of Coleman Coliseum. If students do not have much time but want to attend the career fair, they should make sure to stop by the employers that will be the most beneficial and drop off a resume.  

“There are going to be 51 employers available on the basketball court and 120 around the concourse,” Sabbagh said. “There is a lot of space to walk around on the court, and that allows for more room for both students and employers. I would suggest for students to go to the basketball court first,” Sabbagh said. 

Having a plan and a convenient way to find information will help streamline the process and make communicating with employers quick and easy. 

Career Fair Plus is an app that allows students to connect with attending employers. The app includes an interactive map with employer booth locations, employer profiles and details about available opportunities. Students are encouraged to create a profile and upload their resume.  

There will also be a new booth check-in feature offered at the career fairs. Within Career Fair Plus a QR code can be scanned at an employer’s booth to check in. The employers can then receive your Career Fair Plus profile and resume. 

“Freshmen can really benefit from attending the career fair by getting an understanding of what the career fair is and how to navigate,” Sabbagh said. “It can be overwhelming.”  

Fatema Dhondia, a senior mechanical engineering student and engineering ambassador, has found the career fairs to be beneficial.  

“The career fairs are a great way to get to know employers and find out about opportunities,” Dhondia said. 

Career fairs are an excellent way to find new interests in companies and see what types of jobs they provide. It is never too early to look for that next internship or future full-time job. 

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