Camosun College Career Fair Breaks Attendance Record; Employers Hire Students on the Spot

Over 1500 people attended Camosun’s recent trades career fair at Interurban campus, breaking the attendance record from last year.

“The atrium was absolutely full,” says Sally Coates, Marketing Officer for Camosun’s Co-operative Education and Career Services. “It was an increase from last year and our most successful career fair ever.”

The 2019 event was held on January 24 from 11am to 2pm in the atrium of the Centre for Trades Education and Innovation at Interurban campus. The 28 exhibitors included federal and provincial government departments and ministries, crown agencies, and many local businesses in the construction, technology and trades sectors.

The fair comes on the heels of the official opening of Camosun’s new Career Lab last November, which made a big difference at this year’s event. “We had employers such as Department of National Defence Fleet maintenance give provisional offers to 15 students,” notes Coates. “They held interviews in our new career lab throughout the day.”

The expansive new interview spaces help both employers and students in their job searches. “It’s a huge advantage to be able to host several interviews simultaneously right on campus and it helps streamline the whole recruitment process,” says Coates. “We have always provided interview prep for students as part of the services we offer and now we are able to expand our services for employers.”

Coates credits the success of this year’s career fair to Camosun’s core strength of applied learning. “I think that students are seeing more a career approach than a job approach,” she says. “Camosun has a very good reputation for producing students who are ready to start working from day one. With the applied education focus in our programs, students are able to utilize their knowledge and skills immediately and employers really respect that.”

Camosun’s innovative approaches to career fairs are setting the bar nationally. “We held an “O Canada” career event last September and we had eight different departments from across the federal government, from Industry Canada to the Coast Guard,” notes Coates. “It was a huge success and now the federal government is suggesting that institutions across Canada copy our approach, but we were the first and we were told it was the best one they’ve ever done with a post secondary partner.”

Looking ahead, the future is bright for next year’s career fair. “Camosun’s reputation has really grown and I’ve already got a waitlist for exhibitors,” says Coates. “Employers really want to hire Camosun students.”