Thousands of students attend RIT’s Spring Career Fair

Hundreds of national and local companies, agencies, seek RIT students each year

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A. Sue Weisler

More than 4,000 RIT students attended Wednesday’s Spring Career Fair.

Nicholas D’Avanzo, a second-year biomedical engineering major from Newton, N.J., was one of more than 4,000 Rochester Institute of Technology students and alumni who dressed in business attire, carried their resumes and attended the RIT Spring Career Fair on Wednesday.

D’Avanzo waited patiently in line to speak with a representative from the FBI in hopes of landing a 10-week co-op.

Does the FBI seek biomedical engineers?

“You don’t know what the FBI is looking for,” he said. “It’d be great to work for them.”

The Gordon Field House was filled with students most of the day, as they wound their way among the 250 employing organizations represented by 780 recruiters.

Many of them were RIT alumni, such as Dan Crossen, who received his bachelor’s and master’s degree in mechanical engineering from RIT in 2013. He works as an applications engineer for Graham Corp. in Batavia, N.Y., which designs and builds vacuum and heat transfer equipment.

“What we learned at RIT was great preparation for a career, but you can’t learn everything, so that co-op experience is so important,” Crossen said.

Kristin Ostiguy, a second-year mechanical engineering major from Kingston, Mass., expected to meet recruiters from 10 to 15 companies. She wasn’t limiting her search to somewhere close to home.

“I’m looking for big companies, small companies, anywhere in the U.S.,” she said. “This will be my first co-op, so I want to experiment to see what I want to do.”

RIT’s cooperative education model is one of the oldest and largest in the country. More than half of the students participating in co-op will go to work for one of their co-op employers upon graduation, said Manny Contomanolis, senior associate vice president and director of RIT’s Office of Career Services and Cooperative Education.

RIT’s next Career Fair is scheduled for Sept. 28.