Richard Stockton College junior Ryan Kiska isn’t looking for a full-time job yet, but he still dressed up in a suit to investigate internships Thursday during the Career and Internship Fair at the Campus Center in Galloway Township.
“There shouldn’t even be a question of how you should dress,” Kiska, of Egg Harbor Township, said of the requirement that students wear professional clothing. “You have to show your stuff. You want to set a good example for yourself and the college.”
Stockton has a “dress for success” policy that required students attending the event to dress professionally. That effort made an impression on employers who said it shows that Stockton is preparing students for work, and that students are taking the job market seriously.
“You can tell the students have gone through resume development and have their ‘elevator speech’ down,” said Bruce Longo of Urner Barry in Toms River, referring to the brief pitch students learn to sell themselves in the time it would take for a typical elevator ride. Longo’s company does commodity market news reporting and has full-time job openings for a market analyst and a bilingual account manager fluent in Spanish and English. He already had one good candidate for the bilingual position.
“We are looking for people who show they are ready to be professionals,” Longo said. “Coming here and talking to students for 10 or 15 minutes gives me a good sense of who they are.”
The annual job fair attracted about 80 employers, and while many were offering summer jobs or internships, some did have full-time positions.
Karen Janiszewski was looking for a few good entry-level computer programmers for Healthcare Software Inc. in Wall Township, Monmouth County.
“We are hiring, and we are getting a few good applicants,” she said. “It’s nice to be able to meet them face to face because they are going to have to talk to clients and I can see how they interact.”
The fair typically attracts health care and public safety employers and this year featured a good number of nursing homes and rehabilitation facilities. But there were also a few newcomers, including the Supreme Court of the United States Police, which is expecting to hire about a dozen new officers for the force of about 200 in Washington, D.C.
Officer Richard Lin, a Rutgers University graduate who majored in physics, said the job requires a somewhat more diverse skill set, so the agency is recruiting from all majors, not just criminal justice. He said about 200 people will apply for each job, so the position is competitive.
Another newcomer was Food and Water Watch, which is campaigning to prevent waste from natural gas drilling in Pennsylvania from coming to New Jersey. Canvassing director Tyler VanKirk said the group went to Stockton because it has an environmental science program. He said the group has full-time positions, summer jobs and internships.
Alley Manalio, 22, of Mays Landing, a 2012 graduate of Stockton with a degree in environmental science, said she just finished an internship at Disney World and is now looking for a full-time entry-level job. Her stops included Food and Water Watch, the Atlantic County Utilities Authority and the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge.
“It is hard to find a full-time job down here,” she said. “A lot of jobs are just part time.”
Evgenia White, 26, of Avalon, is graduating in May with a business degree. She’s also looking for a full-time job but said she would consider an internship.
“You have to start somewhere,” she said.
Contact Diane D’Amico: