April 1, 2019, by Noor Syuhada
UNM Careers Fair 2019: Connecting Students to Dream Careers
For many fresh graduates, entering the workforce can be daunting. Job hunting can be competitive, so it is never too early for students to expose themselves to career opportunities and form networks with potential employers.
On March 13 and 14, Careers Advisory Service (CAS) hosted the University of Nottingham Malaysia (UNM) Careers Fair 2019. The event aimed to give students a platform to pitch themselves to future potential employers and establish valuable connections. The event, which took place at Trent Building from 10 am to 4 pm each day, attracted more than 3000 attendees.
This year, the Careers Fair featured over 35 well-established companies from different sectors, such as Accounting & Finance, Pharmaceutical & Healthcare, Consulting & Strategy, ICT & Multimedia, Construction, Engineering & Property and Energy & Utilities, to name a few. The event was a testimony to UNM’s continuous effort to help its industry partners meet excellent students and recruit promising talents.
UNM’s Vice Provost for Research and Knowledge Exchange, Professor Deborah Hall, delivered the welcoming address during the opening ceremony. Mr Patrick Joseph, Director of Academic Services; Ms Mavis Tsang, the Director of Student Experience and Ms Alicia Ch’ng, the Head of CAS were present alongside Professor Hall, to officiate the event. They also presented gifts of appreciation to all standard sponsors. These were: BMW; Cenergi SEA; Coca-Cola; Daikin; Flexiroam; Hays; KPMG; Malayan Flour Mill Berhad; Public Bank; RHB; Stenta Films; Teach for Malaysia; XRemo; and YTL. Additionally, serving as a platinum sponsor for the UNM Careers Fair 2019 was Ecoworld for the second consecutive time, while gold sponsors for the event were GSK, Maybank and The Talentbank. Finally, silver sponsors were BMW; Cenergi SEA; Coca-Cola; Daikin; Flexiroam; Hays; KPMG; Malayan Flour Mill Berhad; Public Bank; RHB; Stenta Films; Teach for Malaysia; XRemo; and YTL.
According to the Head of CAS, Ms Alicia Ch’ng, UNM Careers Fair 2019 is about more than just finding jobs or internships. It serves as a platform for students to network with established individuals and discover ‘insider tips’ as well as gather other information about what employers seek in a candidate. This way, students may even come across ‘hidden jobs’ – work opportunities that they didn’t know even existed.
She says, “I believe that Careers Fair is a medium for students to explore more about themselves. Students that attend the event can foster valuable networking relationships with multiple companies at once. This is helpful because the more students know about the many job opportunities available, the more likely it is that they will find out which jobs suit their individual passion, skills and strength. As this year’s tagline goes, ‘do what you love, love what you do’”.
“Most importantly, it is not only for graduating students but foundation, first year, second year, and even postgraduate students should all come to gain some career inspiration and exploration. Careers Fair is for everyone – you can come with a different purpose but surely, emerge with a clearer aim for a better future.”
This year, in addition to giving students an advantage in their job search, the CAS team also added activities throughout the two-day Careers Fair event to help students maximise their employability. These were, “Speed CV Review”, which gave students the opportunity to get their resume reviewed by Ernst & Young and XRemo, and “LinkedIn Professional Photo Session”, which gave students a chance to get a free professional photo taken for their LinkedIn profile.
Equally important is the role that the CAS office plays in the career development of students beyond their annual Careers Fair event. For instance, prior to Careers Fair 2019, the CAS team took the initiative to prepare students and equip them with various employability skills through services like the Pre-Careers Fair Series. The series included “CV Critique Day”, “How to Ace the Careers Fair” by Teach for Malaysia, “Interview Skills” by KPMG and “CV Writing” by Johnson&Johnson. These career talks enabled students to get insider tips and move towards their career goals. Besides this, the CAS team also runs a very active Facebook page for students benefit all year round.
Ong Tze Chieh, a year 2017 UNM graduate, agrees. She says, “Right after the final exams, I started to look for jobs on websites. I found the Carlsberg Management Training Programme through the UNMC Career Facebook page. I then went through the whole recruitment process and eventually started my job with Carlsberg in September.” Recently, Ong even received a promotion to a permanent role with the Carlsberg Supply Chain – and it all started with just a little help from CAS.
By, Amirah Qistina binti Hazrin (UNM IGNITE)