The national unemployment rate for 20-24 year old college graduates holding at least a bachelor’s degree is 7.0%. To some that may seem like a big number, but when you consider the unemployment rate for the same age group holding a high school diploma is 17.5%, those who have achieved a college education put themselves in a better position.
This may have to do with the opportunities college students across the nation are being given at career and internship fairs. Although the numbers are murky about specifically landing a job at them, introductions are made and exposure to opportunities appear to exist. With 11 job fairs happening in Oregon within the next month, there are chances to check them out.
This past Tuesday SOU students braved the Rouge River room in search of work at this year’s career and internship fair. Over 45 companies and organizations were in attendance from Litha Motors to the Peace Corps and everyone in between offering SOU students the prospect of working for their company.
The fair lasted between the hours of 12:00 and 4:00PM, giving SOU’s over 7,000 students a place to connect with companies and organizations looking for SOU students and alumni interested in employment and internship opportunities in the Rogue Valley.
Lithia motors Representative Shane Riely commented, “SOU has a lot of students with a diverse skill set. People think Lithia motors only does sales, but we need people for accounting, finance, service positions, and SOU is a great place to find those people,” and with 4 dealerships in Southern Oregon alone Lithia Motors has positions to fill.
Students were asked to dress nicely, bring a resume, and make a strong first impression. SOU students answered the call by bringing their suits, ties, dresses, and heels. Student Greg Garcia remarked, “It looks like senior prom, but I guess this is what you have to do to make a first impression.”
If you missed the career and internship fair this year it’s scheduled to happen again next year, and it’s growing in numbers. Student Zach Nelson stated, “I’m really excited to see this many companies interested in SOU students. It’s easy to get discouraged when all you hear about on the news is how many people are unemployed, and it’s nice to know I have a chance.”