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Junior computer science major David Garlack and sophomore forensic anthropology major Grace Evans speak with Special Agent Gwen Buckley at the FBI's table at the IS/IT Meet & Greet Wednesday. September 11, 2019.

The Career Exploration and Development (CED) department hosted an IT field-driven meet and greet today at the Kent Student Center.

IS/IT Meet & Greet is an industry specific networking event for Information Technology fields. The event is for students and employers within the IT field.  Promotion for the event occurred on Handshake.com and the CED website.

Career Exploration and Development Executive Director Kristin Williams describes the event as intimate and advises anyone interested in tech to attend.

“This event demonstrates how technology is really the backbone of all organizations, J.M. Smucker for example, but technology still drives the organization, so for me the reason to attend would be to see the variety of opportunities that can exist in a field and a variety of employers for whom you can work," she said.

Williams said the purpose of this event is to address the increasing demand for jobs in the Ohio IT industry. 

The 2019 CompTIA Cyberstates tech workforce report states that the tech industry has an economic impact of 1,839 billion on the United States.

Ohio Higher Ed reported biofuel/biodiesel technology as second and information system managers as fourth on In-Demand Occupations Requiring a Bachelor's Degree list in Ohio. Ohio’s in-demand jobs can be found through OhioMeansJobs.com 

Companies attending the event include: Federal Bureau Investigation, Akron Children’s Hospital and Eaton.

Students asked questions as well as learned about the IS/IT industry and trends. Students attended the event with suits and resumes prepared to pitch themselves to employers who can provide them a dream job. 

Randy Thomas, human resources recruiter, represented Akron Children’s Hospital at the event. 

Akron Children’s Hospital has the only Pediatric Intensive Care Unit in Ohio and recently won The Beacon Gold Award for Excellence by the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses (AACN).

Thomas said why Kent students should work for Akron Children’s Hospital.

“You see outcome at this job. The work is meaningful and you see your results with the people you help.”

Kent alumni, Mackenzie Husmann employee of Medical Mutual works in IT and user experience.

Husmann said when people think of health insurance they forget about the IT side. According to her, Medical Mutual’s reason to participate in the meet and greet is to recruit Kent State students for their multiple internships opportunities. 

She talked about a beneficial program Medical Mutual offers college students.

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Junior digital sciences major Steven Zajac speaks with a representative from Goodyear Tire at the IS/IT Meet & Greet on Wednesday, September 11, 2019.

“You can go into what’s called an IT Bootcamp. That’s an eleven month program where you rotate through the IT side and also the business side. It is like an intermediate part between college and a full-time position, it eases you into that.”

Amer Alsawaf, senior computer information systems and accounting major, was in search of both a job and an internship at the meet and greet. Alsawaf showed interest in Patriot Software by pointing at their purple logoed sign in between crowds.

“They have focusing on accounting and IT, so I feel comfortable working with them," he said.

Rachelle Yarbrough is a mother and graduated from Kent State in 2005. She currently works as a GPS analysts at Kent State University. She said we all have a lack of confidence, but you must market yourself and have confidence in what you have done.

“This is the absolutely best meet and greet I have ever been to because in my undergraduate experience the career fairs have mostly been geared toward business students," she said.

Yarbrough expressed her amazement with the meet and greet.

“This one, being geared to the technical side, doesn’t get that much light shed on it because it is a growing field," she said. "We like to have something here specific to us, it’s amazing.”

Celetre Jones covers jobs and finance. Contact her at cjone199@kent.edu.

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