Internship fair draws students

More than 80 companies were represented at this year’s College of Professional Studies Academic Internship Fair on Oct. 29 in Carnesecca Arena.

Corporations in fields such as law enforcement and communications, gathered around tables littered on the arena floor.

The event was geared towards students of all experience levels, those looking to land their first internship and others attempting to gain more real-world work experience.

“I worked for a small company last year, and this time I want to find a large company so I can make more connections and get more experience,” said YuanFan Zhao, a senior.

Zhao added that she is confident the skills she has gained from her previous internship will give her an advantage as she searches for more opportunities.

Students were encouraged to bring resumes and dress in business attire in hopes of putting forth a good first impression for companies seeking prospective interns.

Some employers said a neat appearance is one of the top qualities they look for in a potential employee.

“We as employers do not know you, the intern, so your attire is basically our first impression of you,” said Angela Pless, a postal inspector from the United States Postal Inspection Service. “If you look like a mess, don’t be surprised if your resume gets magically moved to the back of the pile.”

However, other employers said students should not be discouraged if their initial impressions are not as strong as they would have liked.

“As long as the student comes ready to work and ready to make a difference, it doesn’t matter what they have on their backs,” said Joseph Coan, a representative from the Roman Catholic Dioceses of Brooklyn.

Michael Pfeiffer, who works for the Ronald McDonald House of Long Island, gave similar advice.

“Dressing for success isn’t true every time,” he said. “If the person has a good attitude and positive energy and a well rounded resume, they have a good chance of getting an interview.”

Representatives from MTV and American Express and Travel Impressions said students who have a set major and know exactly what they want to do within that major will have a better chance of setting themselves apart from other intern-seeking students.

Junior Trudy-Anne Allen also said she wished there were more variety.

“There were a lot of companies for criminal justice, but I am a criminal justice major looking into Forensic Science and there was nothing for my detailed major,” she said.

Saba Ahmed, a senior, said he found the fair to be very helpful.

“It was really organized and there were a lot of different companies there,” he said. “Overall, the fair met my standards.”