Many students feel anxious or uncertain when approaching the end of their degree, especially if they haven’t yet finalized their future career plans. However, it can be hard to make career decisions when students haven’t worked in their chosen fields or know what to expect.
To help students with their transition to the workforce or specific careers, the University of Winnipeg (U of W) will hold its annual career fair on Jan. 19. During the five-hour event, students can meet with recruiters from dozens of local businesses and organizations, including Parks Canada, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Canada Life and the City of Winnipeg.
Attending the fair is “a great way for students to find out what their options might be after they complete their studies,” Anna Hussey, coordinator for the U of W’s academic and career services department, says. The fair gives students “the opportunity to start creating a plan of action so they are better prepared to qualify for positions they are interested in once they graduate.”
Hussey says attendees should prepare for the career fair by reviewing the list of exhibitors posted on the U of W website, updating their resumes and preparing questions for the recruiters. It can also help to prepare an elevator pitch, which Hussey describes as “a 20- to 60-second introduction that lists the key skills, education and experience you can offer an employer.”
Students who are unable to commit to full-time employment may also want to attend the fair, as many exhibitors are seeking candidates for part-time, summer and volunteer positions. Hussey says some of these opportunities are geared toward students who may be limited to working evenings, weekends or during term breaks.
As the cost of living increases, Dr. Phil Cyrenne, a U of W economics professor, says many students respond by working more hours to try to economize on the purchase of goods and services. However, expenses such as rent and transportation cannot be reduced.
“With an inflation rate of seven or eight per cent, this is equivalent to paying a new tax of seven or eight per cent. Students face this problem when they buy food or any other product whose price has risen,” Cyrenne says.
“In general, students are investing in education, which means foregoing spending to try to perform well in class to the extent that inflation makes it harder to devote time to studying,” Cyrenne says. “This hurts their long-time career prospects if it results in poorer academic performance.”
The U of W career fair will happen on Jan. 19 in the Duckworth Centre from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. A list of exhibitors and event accessibility information is available at bit.ly/3X2Ib4Q.
Published in Volume 77, Number 14 of The Uniter (January 12, 2023)