Janet Hawkins| WCCnet.edu
Justin Bhatia graduated from the WCC medical office assistant program in December. Three months later, he was dressed in a crisp blue shirt and gray slacks, waiting patiently to speak to a University of Michigan representative about employment opportunities at the U-M Medical Center.
Bhatia was one of close to 400 job seekers who attended WCC’s 16th annual Spring Job Fair on March 26. According to Ross Gordon, interim director of career services, 76 employers and five nonprofits from the greater Washtenaw County area were on hand to talk with WCC students, graduates, and members of the community about employment opportunities.
Aflac representative Paulina Turowska was at the fair because her company is hiring business-to-business sales representatives. She said that Aflac is looking for people who are professional, ambitious, career-minded, and interested in making a difference in their community.
Demetrius Wallace and Niko Valhakis from Quicken Loans were hoping to connect with individuals who had the same qualities.
“Culture match is really important at Quicken Loans,” said Wallace. “We want someone who wants to better themselves and make a difference in the workplace. We’re looking for individuals who are looking for opportunity. And we are always willing to give people a chance to explore career opportunities with us.”
Like many of the companies present that afternoon, Quicken Loans has a range of positions available in areas like customer service, sales, finance, and accounting. And that is what Matthew Gant was counting on.
He learned of the WCC Job Fair when he picked up a flyer for it at another fair he attended recently. He was hoping that his master’s degree in finance and accounting would help him get his foot in the door. His strategy was simple: talk with as many employers as possible regardless of their product or service.
“I have a question I’m asking everyone today,” said Gant, who has worked for commercial banks and brokerage firms and done some loan advising in the past. “I ask them if they have any finance jobs. I tell them that I’m also interested in consulting opportunities.”
Both employers and prospective employees viewed the WCC Job Fair experience favorably. Gordon said that employers came prepared to find qualified candidates.
“They conducted interviews on the spot,” he said. “They had job applications at their tables and they had prospective candidates fill out applications online in the on-site application center. They were very happy with the applicants they were meeting and they looked forward to putting many of them to work.
“There was a constant buzz in the building,” he added. “The job seekers looked sharp, prepared, and well-rehearsed. We could tell that there were some really exciting connections being made. The Career Services team did a great job pulling everything together for our largest job fair of the year.”
For more information about the WCC Career Services department, visit its website.