Engineering alums enjoy Career Fair ‘from the other side’ as employer

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Amber Stettnichs and two of her colleagues from NEAPCO attend the 2018 UNL STEM Career Fair at Pinnacle Bank Arena.
Amber Stettnichs and two of her colleagues from NEAPCO attend the 2018 UNL STEM Career Fair at Pinnacle Bank Arena.

Having an opportunity to meet with hundreds of employers is the benefit of being a student attending one of Nebraska’s annual spring career fairs but how does that experience transition to when the student is now the employer, recruiting engineering students on behalf of her company?

Amber Stettnichs and two of her colleagues from NEAPCO, a driveline technology company out of Beatrice, Nebraska, did just that spending Thursday, Feb. 15 meeting and interviewing engineering students geared toward making a positive first impression.

“It was different in the regard that I wasn’t trying to seek a job, which was a relief to be honest,” stated Amber Stettnichs, who graduated in December from the College of Engineering. “Since I am a recent alumna, I was able to ask questions regarding their classes and extracurricular activities to have a better grasp on their skills as a developing engineer.”

It isn’t uncommon to see the faces of many former Nebraska students now on the other end of the conversation while representing their employer at Pinnacle Bank Arena. Stettnichs and her co-workers Jacob Greenburg and Cory Haumont are all College of Engineering alumni and used prior career fairs experiences to prepare them for interviewing students.

“When I was a student, I went to a few career fairs,” Stettnichs noted. “My attendance depended upon whether or not I was taking classes during the summer, and if I had already secured a position for the summer or after graduation.”

A week prior to the STEM Career Fair at PBA, University Career Services hosted “Career-Chella,” an opportunity for UNL students to maximize their career fair experience by learning how to launch their careers through presentations, including how to research employers, appropriate dress for interviewing and how to begin and end conversations with employers.

Despite competing with more than 120 other employers at the event, Stettnichs says companies like NEAPCO benefit from the career fair because it introduces students to new companies and, better yet, opens the door to once-in-a-lifetime career opportunities.

“Since we’re one of just a few companies that attends the career fair that’s within the automotive and power sports field,” added Stettnichs, “we’re able to obtain resumes from students interested in what we have to offer, especially for internships and full-time positions.”

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