Students Expand Range of Professional Possibilities at Eller Expo

Oct. 31, 2019
student sitting along outside on laptop

Organization is a point of pride with many Eller College of Management students. Ask them about their schedule on any given day, and they’re likely to pull out a color-coded planner and point to a schedule busy with class, student meetings and social events.

But once every fall, planners are unnecessary, and McClelland Hall transforms as organizations from across the country arrive for the annual career fair: Eller Expo.

Held in 2019 on September 18, McClelland Hall buzzed with recruiters from a wide array of companies, government agencies and nonprofit organizations—from Amazon to American Express, GEICO to Goldman Sachs and Texas Instruments to Visa.

The students in Eller’s top-ranked public undergraduate program transformed, too. They suited up to network, interview and expand their professional connections.

Eller Expo was launched in fall 2016 in response to a growing trend of businesses hiring students earlier in the year. This year, more than 120 companies met 1,100 Eller students who learned about the professional world that awaits them after graduation.

Every student experiences the Expo differently. First year students describe it as daunting and exciting, but three years later, the same student is likely to cite the Expo as a transformative influence on their professional career.

How does a student decide which aspects of the Expo are right for them? With so many companies and opportunities, it can be difficult to choose.

That’s why Eller’s Professional Development Center provides an app for the experience. Through the app students can access a map of the event with each organization clearly labeled. Students can also see employee reviews of different companies left by Eller graduates who have had the chance to work for the firm. There’s also information about which majors companies want to hire and the positions available.

Students open to new opportunities will be pleasantly surprised. “A student might come to the Expo with one company in mind and find five others,” says Erica Alitiem, Eller’s assistant director for employer relations. “Eller Expo helps them expand their range of professional possibilities.”

The possibility for discovery is just one of the reasons the Expo is such an important part of a student’s experience at Eller. “Like most things in life,” says Nicole Allport ‘20 BSBA (Management Information Systems), “practice makes perfect—and the Eller Expo is a great way to practice your professionalism and get used to a career fair environment.”

Learn more about the transformational power of professional development at the Eller College.