College Hosts Career Fair Specifically for CIT Division Students
WINTERVILLE—Pitt Community College hosted a career fair Wednesday that gave students in its Construction and Industrial Technology (CIT) programs an opportunity to meet with area employers about jobs, internships and apprenticeships.
Held in the Craig M. Goess CIT Building, the fair featured representatives from several area construction companies, along with Greenville Utilities Commission, Grady-White Boats, Thermo Fisher Scientific and World Cat Boats. In all, there were 12 businesses on hand to speak with 65 CIT students.
“Our students were excited about the fair and its focus on their academic division,” said PCC Employer Relations Specialist Reginald Baker. “The feedback from employers was great. A number of them said they enjoyed the interaction with students and that they preferred academic-specific job fairs rather than general career fairs featuring a wide variety of businesses and industries.”
Baker said the need for skilled CIT professionals is growing due to new residential and commercial demands and continued growth of local businesses and industries. Nationally, a wave of Baby Boomers retiring from the construction trades has created even greater need for skilled tradespeople.
Along with internships that offer students short-term opportunities to gain experience in an area related to their program of study, PCC is making a concerted effort to establish apprenticeships. PCC Apprenticeships Coordinator Latrice Perry said the fair gave her a chance to speak with employers about opportunities for additional apprenticeship instruction, which can be offered in a variety of ways, including continuing education courses, academic certificates and degrees, and company-led educational training programs.
“Apprenticeships are occupation-specific, with an opportunity for students to gain experience by completing on-the-job training hours and earning a wage …,” Perry said. “At the completion of an apprenticeship, the student receives a journeyman certificate, which is awarded by the U.S. Department of Labor.”
Perry said Pitt is currently partnering with more than 20 companies on apprenticeships. She said 80 students are taking advantage of those training opportunities, and the number is steadily growing.
“Apprenticeships give our students opportunities to engage in career exploration that fosters the knowledge and skill they need to obtain sustainable careers,” Perry said.
Baker said Wednesday’s CIT Career Fair was the product of a collaboration between PCC Career Services and the college’s Workforce Development and CIT departments.