MTU Career Fair returns to Keweenaw

Recruiters from more than 350 companies will head to Michigan Tech University’s career fair this week — continuing their in-person meetings with local restaurants and hotels as well as events to fill vacancies at their companies.

A career fair will be held on Wednesday, September 21st from 2-7pm in the Michigan Tech Student Development Complex. Over the next day and beyond, hundreds of follow-up interviews will be conducted around campus. The event is a major factor in Tech’s 93% average job placement rate within six months of graduation. There are no statistics on how many meals and memories are shared, but it’s safe to say that lodging and dining establishments are rolling out the welcome mats for new and returning visitors.

Cody Kangas, executive director of corporate and foundation relations and acting director of career services at Michigan Tech, said by early September, hotels and most other accommodations within two hours of the university were fully booked.

Career Services operates year-round to help students find co-ops, internships and full-time jobs, offering programs for both Huskies and companies. Students are provided with one-on-one coaching on essential skills. Tech’s multidisciplinary career fair held in the fall and spring will culminate in one of the largest events of its kind in the country with these practical interviews, resume sessions and industry service.

It’s been two years since students walked down MacInnes Drive to the Student Development Complex, ready in their best work to shake hands with their futures.

“Demand is unprecedented. Employers want to be here — they’re ready to give back,” Kangas said.

Michigan Tech President Rick Kubek said the response demonstrates Michigan Tech’s excellence in building partnerships and preparing students for the job market.

“A degree from Michigan Tech is highly valued in the marketplace, as evidenced by the number of employers who attended the university’s career fair this year,” he said. It’s this level of corporate engagement that helps distinguish Michigan Tech’s student experience. That’s one of the many reasons we’re excited to have recruiters back on campus this week.


The average number of companies hiring in the campus each year


Recruiters who want to hire huskies for bi-annual shows


Average placement rate within six months of graduation

Technological phenomena have regional impact.

The most recent impact of Michigan Tech on the state and regional economy occurred in 2016. It doesn’t take visitor spending into account, but a new online visitor dashboard developed by the Keweenaw Convention and Visitors Bureau (KCVB) does. KCVB Executive Director Brad Barnett said it will be interesting to compare the in-person career fair to the past two years. Statistics are available only for the last three years, and are updated every three months. Meanwhile, the qualitative data is clearly positive.

“We’re excited to have the Tech Career Fair back, as it brings visitors from all over the country looking to hire our MTU students!”Brad Barnett, executive director of the Kewanee Convention and Visitors Bureau

“Many interns are Tech alumni, so the career fair gives them a chance to come back to Houghton to patronize their favorite local restaurants and reminisce about their days on campus,” Barnett said. “I know downtown businesses are happy to be back recruiting in person along with other university events.”

Get ready to hire MTU Huskies

For recruiters, it’s a welcome trip to campus. For many students, it’s a new opportunity to meet face-to-face with employers. Most current Huskies have only experienced the fantasy version of the must-career show over the past two years. “Attending the career fair this week is the first time for most of the students that they have been able to participate in person,” Kangas said. “Virtual shows have filled a critical need during a very stressful time, but the importance of being able to meet potential employers face-to-face cannot be overstated. It allows for connections and conversations that are sometimes not possible online.

Katie Peterson at Michigan Tech’s Career Services Coaching Session helps students with their remo studies.

Katie Peterson, a senior environmental engineering student, has experienced both event formats. He wins hands down in the face. “I went to a career fair when I was in elementary school,” she said. “A lot of people encourage going just to see what it’s all about. I talked to DTE; The recruiter was great. I was invited to breakfast the next day to learn more about the company.”

“It’s going to be really fun to have that in person again.”Katie Peterson ’23, a senior environmental engineering student

Peterson had a harder time making a first impression on video. “Physical presence makes a big difference.”

Peterson is one of Tech’s career coaches, working with students to help them find co-ops, internships and full-time jobs. In the days leading up to the career fair, she and other coaches help students improve their resume and interview skills. “A little guidance goes a long way,” she said. “I’m glad we’re here to help.”

Students in suits, dresses and other business attire line up in the Student Development Complex for job fair events at Michigan Tech.
Career Fair 2019 includes many of the highlights and features that Huskies can expect this year, from connecting with the companies most interested in using the mobile app (Career Fair Plus), to an exclusive look at the Huskies Pep Band.

Michigan Technological University is a public research university founded in 1885 in Houghton, Michigan, with more than 7,000 students from 55 countries around the world. Consistently ranked among the best universities in the country for return on investment, Michigan Technological University offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate programs in science and technology, engineering, computing, forestry, business and economics, health professions, humanities, mathematics, social sciences, and biology. Art. The rural campus is located miles from Lake Superior in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, offering year-round opportunities for outdoor adventure.

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