Mizzou Engineering hosted its annual spring career fair Tuesday with more than 150 employers registered to recruit students for internships and full-time employment. Nearly 700 students navigated the aisles of booths at the MizzouRec Complex that included big name companies such as 3M and Boeing.
Celestene Sebag, a junior bioengineering major, was there on a mission to get a summer internship in the water quality sector. While this was her third career fair, Sebag said she was slightly nervous because she has never had an internship before. She switched her focus to bioenvironmental engineering in the second semester of her sophomore year, which left her little time to find an internship.
“I feel a little behind in that aspect. Obviously I’m a junior, and I feel like I should’ve had an internship by now. But now, I’m just starting to search for one,” Sebag said. “I’m still really passionate about it, so I think that’s what matters.”
Sebag visited four companies at the fair: the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, Klingner & Associates, Mead & Hunt and HDR. Before approaching any representatives, Sebag reviewed the notes she had taken about the company.
“So I looked at the company list, made sure to favorite whichever ones I really wanted to talk to, and then searched their website to see if they did have internship openings,” Sebag said.
Sebag felt really prepared because she had done previous research about the companies she was most interested in. Her preparation also helped her focus on building a rapport with the representatives. She bonded over her hometown of Fayetteville, Ark., with HDR and the shared experience of serving on the College’s St. Pat’s Board with the representative at Klingner & Associates.
Sebag was looking for companies that had opportunities for field-work and the ability to develop her technical skills. She asked representatives what their work environments were like.
“When I hear, like the project manager from HDR, she was talking a lot about how she works in teams. I really like that and how she has a voice being a leader, and she’s female. That’s really cool. I love to see that,” Sebag said.
Attending the fair was beneficial in more ways than connecting Sebag with companies. It allowed her the opportunity to promote herself and communicate.
“It’s good experience in general, even if you don’t get an internship. Just going and getting the experience of learning how to talk to people is important,” she said. “Just learning how to pitch yourself and how to share your skills and knowledge is important too which engineers are known for not being able to talk to people.”