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Early Spring Job Fair Plays Well in Peoria

Feb 8, 2013

Steve Tarter

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Jobs were in the air at Bradley University on Wednesday.

The Spring Job and Internship Fair held at the Renaissance Coliseum on
campus drew 113 employers and between 800 and 900 students, said Jane
Linnenburger, executive director of Bradley's Smith Career Center.

"The spring job fair is one of two big job fairs we hold each year. A lot
of students here are looking for internships. They know that many companies
use it as a pipeline to full-time employment," she said.

Kate Carroll, a BU sophomore from Peoria, was one of those looking for an
intern position.

"I want to help develop my communication skills. I'm also looking to
possibly get into human resources," she said.

Karly Falbri, a senior PR major from Chicago, made Peoria-based Maui Jim,
a company that produces high-end sunglasses, one of her stops at the job fair.
"I'm a beach kind of girl."

While students lined up to speak with representatives of major companies
like Caterpillar Inc., Pepsi Beverages Co. and Archer Daniels Midland, others
dropped by the booths of smaller employers to get ideas that might lead to a
career move.

Lawrence Thomas manned the Boy Scouts of America booth with a specific
interest.

"We're looking for program specialists for inner-city schools, especially
positive male role models," he said.

Other recruiters like Linda Kelnosky of Sargent & Lundy, a Chicago-based
engineering consulting firm, have been frequent visitors to the Hilltop,
attending BU job fairs on a regular basis.

"We get a lot of good students from Bradley. We're looking to fill
full-time jobs," she said.

Luis Hernandez, a retail sales representative for Omaha, Neb.-based food
giant ConAgra, said that the company rated Bradley highly because of the
school's sales program.

"There aren't many like it around the country," said Hernandez, whose own
sales territory covers much of Texas.

Ana Trujillo, a 2009 Bradley graduate, was back on campus Wednesday --
this time as a recruiter for Target where she's worked for the past four
years.

Trujillo serves as a shining example of the benefits an internship can
bring.

"I'm always excited to come back to Bradley. I remember getting an
internship with Target at the 2009 job fair. That's where I got my start," she
said.

Linnenburger, brandishing a name plate that indicated she was attending
her last job fair (she's retiring this spring after 35 years at Bradley), said
that the job fairs have contributed to the school's strong placement record.

"We've tracked all 1,065 graduates of the 2011- 2012 school year and
found that 86 percent found a career-related experience such as an
internship," she said.

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Distributed by MCT Information Services


Source: (c) 2013 Journal Star (Peoria, Ill.)

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