Eagerly clutching résumés and portfolios, seniors flocked to the MacKenzie Great Hall to greet potential employers at the annual Educator Recruitment followed by the Career Fair. Name badges displaying senior status and academic major decorated many of the professionally-dressed students who perused through the aisles of tables in the room. Representatives stood by with business cards, information, and candy dishes on hand, ready to discuss their available positions with prospective employees.
During Educator Recruitment, 94 education recruiters from schools from California to New England spoke with education majors, in search of future teachers dedicated to God, ready to teach, and who would encourage their students.
Tim England of Heritage Christian School in Findlay, Ohio, said, “I want to know that [potential recruits] have a great testimony and that they can disciple young people to be like Christ, because that’s what we’re about—being a discipleship ministry.”
Micah Conlon (MS ’02) teaches at Faith Christian Academy in North Carolina. He met with some promising students during his time at Educator Recruitment. “We’ve found a lot of candidates, and we’ve gotten to the point that we’ve flown them to look at our school, so kind of a final choice with several of them,” he said. “I never could’ve dreamt at the time when I was here for recruitment as a student that I’d be back here as an administrator at some point.”
Dustin McElreath, PCC’s Student and Alumni Services Director, explained, “We have a great community of Christian schools, so we always end up with a waiting list for Educator Recruitment. These schools provide excellent opportunities for our education and ministry majors to connect with some of the best schools in the country!”
A couple days later, Career Fair also provided seniors the unique opportunity to network with 57 business representatives while seeking to fill job openings.
“For Career Fair, we compiled a list of employers in all major fields of study and started calling, visiting, and messaging to connect with them,” said McElreath. “This targeted approach is what led to having more options in employers and positions available. We also got recommendations for employers through staff and faculty, which helped a lot. It’s really just about building good relationships and showing employers the quality of students PCC has to offer.”
David Halstead (’00) of Halstead & Halstead, PC Certified Public Accountants and Consultants, spoke with a variety of students during the fair. “I’ve had a lot of business majors [approach me],” he said, although other relevant majors to his business also talked to him. “[This is the] first time I’ve done the [Career Fair] and it’s been great. I really want to do this again and make it [on a] regular basis. As we’re growing, we always want to have a pipeline of contact open. That’s been really helpful.”
Whether they were seeking a teaching position or feeling out business opportunities, seniors experienced an atmosphere of professionalism as they spoke to representatives in their respective fields. Many seniors even took the first step toward their future careers by participating in interviews during the events.
“A lot of these folks, especially the bigger schools who’ve done this a while, have done the leg work ahead of time,” said Andrew Davis, pastor of Granite Baptist Church (VA), recruiting teachers for their Christian academy. “They’ve started reaching out to people, so as soon as they hit the door they’re going straight to interviews.”
McElreath said of the event as a whole, “We have 150 recruiters come from all over the country and several from around the world, to recruit our college students. The events provide 3 days for students to connect with potential employers. We provide résumé and interview guidance beforehand, interview rooms during the events, and an online Career Services portal for continued follow-up afterwards. We try to create a rewarding experience for our students and the recruiters.”
As these graduating seniors prepare for their future, the Educator Recruitment and Career Fair provided them with an excellent kickoff for their journey from student to professional.