On Friday, Sept. 27, the St. Louis I-CAR Committee hosted its 2019 Automotive and Collision Job Fair at the World Wide Technology Raceway in Madison, IL.
Shelly Jones, chair for the St. Louis I-CAR Committee, commented, “In my opinion, this was our best year yet. This is the first year that we had schools contacting us to participate. The word is out that this job fair is the perfect opportunity for students to make connections in the industry while having fun at the race track.”
Gene Slattery, education coordinator for the Committee, added, “The 2019 St. Louis I-CAR Job Fair was put on by our sub-committee, in partnership with NHRA/World Wide Technology Raceway, in order to help local students in automotive and collision programs interview for jobs and to network together for future employment. We had 29 automotive and collision repair industry partners who interviewed over 850 students from 14 local high school and college automotive and collision programs. This was by far the largest event we have run yet, and the turnout was just great!”
Preparation on the day of the event began at 6:30 a.m. with industry partners setting up their tables, and beginning at 8:30 a.m., Committee members greeted students who arrived at the front gate. Slattery noted, “Networking for our industry is the finest thing that we can do for our industry. Everyone wins when we support such a great event. We bring associations, schools and students together and show them we support them and want to help them get into our industry.”
The 2019 Automotive and Collision Job Fair included a couple of new components that were very successful. Jones explained, “All the companies that paid for a table received a list of students that were interested in jobs. We sent a survey link to the schools in April 2019 and again two weeks prior to the job fair in September. The survey collected student contact information, the school and program they are in, their experience, plus the type of position they are interested in. One week prior to the job fair, each company received a list of 458 students that are interested in jobs. We also offered two dedicated golf cart shuttles that constantly ran from the parking area to our tent.