Despite economic downturn, Kettering's spring employment fairs prove successful

By Website Administrator | Apr 27, 2001

Kettering University's spring co-op fairs in Troy, Livonia, Chicago, Grand Rapids and Lansing brought more than 560 in-coming Kettering students and 75 employers together to discuss cooperative education opportunities currently available in spite of reports concerning the lagging U.S. economy.

Kettering University's spring co-op fairs in Troy, Livonia, Chicago, Grand Rapids and Lansing brought more than 560 in-coming Kettering students and 75 employers together to discuss cooperative education opportunities currently available in spite of reports concerning the lagging U.S. economy.

The goal behind these fairs is to expose students accepted into Kettering with an open-ended interview and employment process that allows them to learn more about some of the nation's best employers that serve as co-op partners for the University. Brian Martin, Lisa Phillips, Doug Bourassa and Venetia Chaney, all of whom serve as managers in Kettering's Corporate Relations Dept., organized and coordinated Detroit area co-op fairs at the Northfield Hilton in Troy April 2 and at The Burton Manor in Livonia April 10.

Based on data gathered at both fairs, more than 390 students and 47 recruiters attended these events. Some of the companies that participated included General Motors Corp., Visteon Automotive, Federal-Mogul, Arvin Meritor and Robert Bosch Corp.

Following the fairs, companies filled out evaluation forms, which Kettering will use to craft future fairs as the University continues to work in meeting both student and company needs in terms of new co-op employment opportunities. Martin said that companies liked the format for the fairs and were particularly pleased with the chance to select from two dates in which to attend. He noted that the fairs give companies "a chance to see a large number of students in person during the course of an afternoon, which helps them make better decisions on who to interview at their business locations." Martin also said that the fairs give students comparative information with which to accept or decline co-op offers.

Kettering also hosted a fair April 3 in Chicago at the DoubleTree Suites Hotel in Glenview, Ill. Kettering Corporate Relations Manager Gail Harman oversaw this event, which brought more than 20 students from the state of Illinois and Michigan to meet with such notable companies as UPS, Dynamic Motion Control, ITW, USF Logistics, HPR Partners and SealMaster Bearings. Based on this fair, Harman reported that employers were extremely impressed with Kettering students and students were pleased with their interviews.

"Many employers in the Chicago area have intentions of hiring Kettering students this year," she said. "I'm confident the program was viewed as a success by all who participated and we look forward to the co-op employment placements we expect to make as a result of this fair."

Carmon Liversedge, who also serves as a corporate manager in the Corporate Relations Dept., coordinated a west Michigan fair in Grand Rapids March 29, which was co-sponsored with Steelcase Inc., one of Kettering's 700 co-op employers. This allowed Kettering to give students a sense of the philosophy regarding the University's partnership with industry in every aspect of the school's co-op program. In addition, Liversedge also directed a mid-Michigan fair in Lansing April 12. More than 20 employers and 152 students attended these fairs.

"Employers find this interview format to be extremely cost effective, one that allows them to screen many potential co-op student employees in a very short time," he explained. "Students benefit from the low-stress environment as they become progressively accustomed to the interview process and hone their fledgling presentation skills."

Kettering will host two additional co-op fairs on campus in August and November with employers from all over the nation in attendance. For more information, contact Kettering's Corporate Relations Dept. at (800) 955-4464, extension 7865, or visit Kettering's website at www.Kettering.edu.