Mines hosted the fourth largest Spring Career Day on record in February. A total of 1,700 students and recent graduates attended the event in the Student Recreation Center, where 145 organizations staffed booths with about 400 recruiters, many of whom were in familiar territory. “Typically one-third are alumni,” said Jean Manning-Clark, director of career services, who makes alumni-recruiters easy to spot, giving them each a ‘CSM alumni’ sticker to wear.
Second to May Commencement, the spring and fall career days are the largest regularly held events on campus. Planning begins at least a year in advance and in the last four months Manning-Clark and her full-time staff of four works flat out.
They get assistance from a team of about 12 student employees, and on the day of the event, Blue Key moves in to help stage, putting in a total of about 120 volunteer-hours. “They run the show,” says Manning-Clark. “I don’t know what I’d do without them.” In return, the Career Center makes a big donation to the organization, says Manning-Clark. “So career day is helping keep the M lit,” she laughs.
Manning-Clark does her best to anticipate demand from recruiters, but that hasn’t been easy to gauge lately. Events generally sell out well in advance; five recruiters were turned away this spring, and another three companies on the waitlist squeaked in at the last minute when a snowstorm led to three cancellations.
The level of interest in recruiting Mines students was highlighted in a U.S. News and World Report studyreleased in March, which ranked Mines second in the nation for the number of undergraduates who had held internships prior to graduation.
It’s still ski season in Colorado, but Manning-Clark and her staff have already turned their attention to Fall Career Day on September 13. “We’ll see 185 to 190 organizations with about 750 recruiters,” she says. “Fall is always larger.” Last September, 180 companies and 3,150 job seekers attended.
At the University of Colorado at Boulder, where the student population is six times larger, fall career day will be a slightly smaller affair than Mines’ event. “They have 170 booths,” says Manning-Clark. It’s a different market, she admits,but there’s clearly some pride in her perennially upbeat voice.
Registration for Fall Career Day opens May 17, and she’s anticipating she’ll sellout by the end of June. In her parting comment the pride and sparkle are back: “Two years ago we sold out in two days.”