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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona holds I.T. job fair with local agencies

Meghan Fernandez

The state of Arizona held a technology job fair at the Phoenix Business and Workforce Development Center on Thursday.

PHOENIX — On Thursday, an assembly of eager applicants attended the of Arizona State Government’s Technology job fair at the Phoenix Business and Workforce Development Center. Unlike previously held job fairs, the invited agencies provide openings for strictly IT positions.

Susan Alexander, a recruiter from the Arizona Department of Economic Security, and Christina Vega, a human resources analyst and recruiter from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality, were both in attendance at the event, hoping to find employees that harbored an impressive skill set as well as enthusiasm for the job.

Alexander, who has worked in the private sector and has served as a worldwide recruiter, emphasized the importance of finding an employee who can adjust well to the demanding aspects of a job within the IT field.

“In finding an ideal employee, it is important that they are fast learners, technology oriented and flexible,” Alexander said.

In previous years, it has been difficult recruiting prospects at hosted job fairs, as sometimes the lack of experience or qualification for intensive IT positions complicates the hiring process, Alexander said. She discussed how the great benefits and high-paying salary are even more of a reason as to why the Arizona Department of Economic Security makes it a top priority to hire the right people.

Vega, on the other hand, addressed the merging of the IT fields with those of science-based jobs. Vega said that the lab work conducted during attendance at a university would qualify an applicant for a science-based position, but would not be enough to satisfy the requirements of an IT job within the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality.

“When trying to find an employee who is a fit for our company, it is not just skill-based,” Vega said. “Skills can be taught. We look for someone with passion.”

Katie Matysik, senior recruiter for the Arizona Department of Administration, further discussed the importance of organizing and supporting an event such as this.

“In the state of Arizona, there are approximately 1,500 IT positions available [and] openings for jobs on several position levels,” Matysik said. “Entry level IT positions allow for inexperienced workers with a bachelor’s degree to familiarize themselves with the IT work environment and provide the chance to gain additional job skills.”

Matysik mentioned the development of two internship programs, Arizona Interns- in-Action and the City of Phoenix Management Internship Program, that would allow students and recent graduates to gain more hands-on experience and prepare them for a career in the IT field. Interns-in-Action is a program that would be incorporated with the university’s major program, while the Management Internship Program would allow those who have graduated college within the last two years to partake in internship opportunities within an agency. According to Matysik, the Management Internship Program is underway for this fall and resumes are currently being accepted.

When asked what the greatest challenge was in recruiting and conducting a job fair, Matysik conveyed the importance of reaching the right demographic of people.

“The biggest challenge is getting the word out to enough people and to the right people,” Matysik said. “We want to publicize our event but especially to those who have IT experience and be able to direct the right people to come in and see what is available.”

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