Students gathered at the Center for Engineering Innovation and Design Tuesday night for its annual Engineering Industry Night — this year, larger than ever before.
With the demand for science, technology, engineering and math employees ever-increasing, the Yale Office of Career Strategy hosted an Electrical, Mechanical, Biomedical and Chemical Engineering Industry Night Tuesday to facilitate undergraduate and graduate engineering students’ search for internships and employment. Each fall, OCS holds these events in an attempt to encourage and facilitate Yale students’ efforts to obtain employment in different engineering fields. OCS Associate Director Brian Frenette said the event’s main goal is to link employers in the engineering field with undergraduate and graduate students, providing networking opportunities for students.
Engineering students noted that the mix of large companies, such as Duracell and Aviya Aerospace Systems, alongside smaller Yale startups like Trinity Mobile Networks, made for a very diverse bazaar. Chemical engineering major Nicholas Gomez ’18, who said he attended the event in search of an internship, said he was pleased with the number of “big-name companies” present.
“I’m looking for internship opportunities to get my foot in the door, get research experience, test out the waters [and] make sure I really want to do chemical engineering as a career,” Gomez said.
Fourteen companies with various engineering focuses were in attendance.
Only nine companies attended the event last year, and students said they appreciated this year’s increase. But others said the lack of variety in engineering concentrations left something to be desired, and that the event still has the potential to be much larger.
Chemical engineering major Beau Birdsall ’17 said he would like to see a bigger event in coming years. He said he understands that many major engineering firms do not need to actively recruit students, because they can rely on name recognition alone. Regardless, Birdsall said, he would prefer to see more companies in attendance.
Other students interviewed noted a lack of variety in engineering concentrations represented by the employers, and voiced a lack of satisfaction with the event overall.
Olga Wroblewski ’16 said the fair lacked opportunities for biomedical engineers, while Nana Ama Akowuah ’18, who plans to pursue a career in the oil industry, also failed to find a desirable internship.
There were many opportunities for students looking to go into software engineering, Akowuah said, but there was only a single chemical engineering company.
Recruiter Gita Subramony ’06, project consultant for Energy & Resource Solutions, an energy management and consulting firm, said that her company was eager to seek employees at Yale. She added that Yale students not only excel in academics, but are also civic-minded and well-rounded.
“It seems like everybody’s resumes that I’ve looked at [have] not only had really great academics but also [show] involvement in other aspects that are related to engineering but still show a diversity of interests,” Subramony said.
U.S. Air Force Recruiting Service Staff Sgt. BreAnna Nygren said this was the USAF’s first year attending the event because the organization was unaware of it last year. But she added that the USAF is eager to hire, as the organization is especially in need of engineers since the profession is in high demand. Last year, she added, she hired a Yale student who will serve as a future pilot in the Air Force.
Christine Falcha, the human resources representative for Enthone Inc., a chemicals firm, said the company has had a long-standing relationship with Yale. Enthone returns to the event year after year because the company has received “high quality” employees from Yale, she added.
The engineering night was held in the CEID from 6 to 8 p.m.