Thousands of students and over 100 employers at Aalto Talent Expo
Organized since 2019 (with special arrangements during the corona years), Aalto Talent Expo is one of the biggest efforts of Aalto University's career services to create working life contacts for students. In addition to Aalto Talent Expo, another large career fair Summer Job Day organized annually, at the beginning of the year.
Despite the rather inclement weather, a constant flow of students from around the campus came to Otahalli, the fair enjoying a record number of over 5 000 students from all Aalto fields (technology, business, art and design) and from all education levels (from bachelors to doctors). The fair had 113 exhibitors, from state institutions to large international corporations and smaller growing companies. Even though the cold weather was felt inside Otahalli at the beginning of the day, the atmosphere warmed up quite quickly during the day thanks to all the active participants.
The live fair was preceded by virtual fair activities in JobTeaser with students' personal counseling sessions with the exhibitors. In these discussions, students received advice on creating a CV and application letter, a LinkedIn profile and a portfolio. The times filled up quite quickly and there would certainly have been an demand for more.
At the fair stands, traditional "counter and candy bowl" combinations were present, but also popcorn machines, a wheel of fortune and ice cream tubs, attracting students to stop at invidivual stands. Based on the student feedback, these serve a purpose, but the students were more convinced by the "approachable atmosphere and friendly people". Fairs are of great importance in building the employer image of exhibitors. Many of them had brough former students, with whom students could talk.
"Wonderful companies and people. Favorite event of the year"
A more detailed analysis of the 2023 Aalto Talent Expo will be published a little later, but below is an overview of the feedback received. We ask feedback from both students and exhibitors every year and develop the event based on it.
In 2023, more than 5,000 students from the fields of business, art, design and technology and 113 organizations from various industries participated in the fair. Based on the feedback, both the exhibitors and the students were very satisfied with the event. The fair was rated 4.6/5 overall by the exhibitors. The students gave the live event a rating of 4.2/5.
"I got to interact with so many amazing people from the industry. Their experiences that they share were very valuable," commented one student.
"We were very satisfied with our participation and we achieved the goal set for the fair, i.e. reaching students and making us even better known among Aalto students as well. Overall a good event!," commented one exhibitor.
Based on student feedback, the most popular exhibitors were: ABB, Nokia and OP. All three are of course quite large employers of Aalto University students and have graduates from our school, but they have also succeeded in making their stand attractive and easy to approach.
Ville Hakulinen, Fair Cordinator of the School of Business, says that the fair arrangements go smoother every year, because over the years the team has learned quite a few things. In terms of success, it is important that nothing is left to chance. Though we can't control the weather.
"This year, we offered the exhibitors the opportunity to show their willingness to offer thesis topics to our students, in addition to their fields of study (which fields of study they mostly hire from) and language requirements (is Finnish necessary for work assignments) with a symbol in their booths. In the future, those offering jobs with doctoral-level education will also have the opportunity to show it with a symbol. We also modified the map of the fairgrounds so that the visitors have the opportunity to choose their route even more freely and so that the air in the space circulated better (in 2022 it got a bit too warm in Otahalli). After going through this year's feedback, there of course is something new for next fall, but what is certain is that we will invest even more in combating cold and heat."
Registration for Summer Job Day will open in the next few days and for next fall's Aalto Talent Expo in May 2024.