September 28, 2023 : By Christian Shields - Office of Communications & Public Engagement
Liberty University Career Services hosted its first Business & Communication Career Fair on Tuesday in the LaHaye Multipurpose Center, providing students from the School of Business, School of Communication & the Arts, and School of Aeronautics the chance to connect with employers for internships and full-time positions.
The career fair hosted 53 employers and was attended by 625 students. Matt Young, Assistant Director of Employer Relations, said Career Services has been working to improve career fairs for students by tailoring the events to schools and degree programs.
“We’ve designed all our career fairs to provide a more targeted recruiting experience for each school, students, and employers, in an effort to provide heightened clarity for which career fair to participate in,” he said.
A benefit of hosting a more targeted career fair is the ability to provide high-profile businesses a more positive experience by ensuring that the students they’re looking to hire will attend. Employers at Tuesday’s fair included Fox Corporation (its first time to participate in a Liberty career fair), Coca-Cola Consolidated Inc., Ronald Blue Trust, Mansfield Energy, Samaritan’s Purse, The Boeing Company, Salem Media Group, Skillstorm, and Spirit Airlines.
Young said Tuesday’s career fair combined the business, communication & the arts, and aeronautics schools because of the commonalities in these professions and businesses looking for students with certain skillsets.
“The fact that we had even more students attend this Fall’s Business & Communication Career Fair than the previous All Majors Career Fair is a huge testimony to the strategic efforts that we put forward to try and recruit employers specific for these schools,” he said.
Tuesday’s career fair was one of nine total career fairs scheduled this semester; five are planned for the spring.
Sarah Fendrich, assistant director of career coaching at Liberty, emphasized the incredible benefits for students who attend career fairs. She said one student she met was originally hesitant to talk to employers, but once she did, she networked with an organization that offers what she would call her dream internship.
“It’s an opportunity to not just begin building your network, but it’s also an opportunity for students to expand their horizons and see what is available as far as internships and jobs. It helps students understand the breadth of opportunities available, not just limited to what they might be aware is available,” Fendrich said.
Several students said they are grateful for the university’s focus on career preparation.
“I really appreciate that Liberty (hosts this event) because not all universities are this career-oriented,” said senior Lorelle Phillips, who is studying communication as part of her interdisciplinary studies degree. “It’s really important for me, especially as a senior.”
Senior business student Annika Stubblebine echoed Phillips’ sentiments.
“It’s such as blessing to go to Liberty where they’re so intentional about our next steps and actually caring about our futures,” she said. “It’s such a blessing to come to a career fair like this, and I feel a lot more prepared and not as stressed.”