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Connections built through Brockport Community Fair

by Alyssa Daley - Editor in Chief
Tue, Feb 13th 2018 10:40 pm

By definition, college is an establishment created with the purpose of giving students the opportunity to learn. Every year, The College at Brockport hosts numerous job and internship fairs directed toward different areas students may be interested in, such as non-for-profit organizations. This year, Community Development conducted the Brockport Community Fair to connect students, staff and faculty with opportunities off-campus but within the Brockport zip code. 

The event took place Wednesday, Feb. 7, and gave local businesses the chance to look for potential employees, interns and volunteers, while also networking with faculty and staff. This bridge building between the campus community and village community has been one many organizations and departments have taken on as an initiative, including Brockport Student Government. Taking place in the Union Main Lounge during prime lunch hours, there was a consistent stream of students interacting with the businesses and organizations in attendance. 

Brockport Arts Festival: BISCO, Seymour Library, and Kiwanis Club of Brockport were all staples at the community fair. The Brockport Orchestra was also at the event to inform students, staff and faculty of the opportunity to continue playing the instrument they love in an official group other than the groups on campus. The hours are more flexible and there are more opportunities to perform with the community orchestra than the one on campus. 

The Western Monroe Historical Society was also in attendance and has been a consistent connection for the college community, working with students during the annual Saturday of Service at the beginning of the academic year, as well as other volunteer events organized by Community Development. 

Associate librarian at Drake Memorial Library, Charlie Cowling, took to the Brockport History Forum’s Facebook page to encourage students to check out the Brockport Community Museum’s table at the community fair. 

“Among other groups, the Brockport Community Museum will have a table, they do a lot of great local history work and might be an excellent opportunity for an internship,” Cowling wrote in an email.

Many of the organizations at the event were offering volunteer/internship opportunities for students to gain hands-on experience in their respective fields. The Brockport Volunteer Fire Department, which serves Clarkson and Sweden as well, had an interactive and engaging method compared to the traditional tabling seen at most job/internship fairs. 

Firefighters had brought with them a fire simulator that looked almost like a space heater, except the front was simply a digital screen. The firefighters demonstrated how to put out a fire using a remote that acted like a fire extinguisher/fire hose. By pointing that remote at the simulator, it recognized how much gaseous carbon dioxide/water depending on fire extinguisher/hose, as well as where the user was directing the spray. If the user did a good enough job, the flame was tamed. There were different levels of difficulties that the firefighters and interested students were able to try and beat.

Getting involved is a message students hear repeatedly over their college careers. There is a reason behind it and it’s a solid one: without real experience, it will be difficult, if not impossible, to get a job after graduation. For some students, on-campus organizations are enough, while for others, like those who commute to college or non-traditional students, looking off-campus and to the surrounding area for opportunities is more convenient scheduling-wise. For all students, looking to make connections with off campus businesses and organizations is essential. The Brockport Community Fair was successful in facilitating this priceless necessity. 

The next opportunity for professional networking is the Jobs and Internship Fair scheduled for Wednesday, March 7, in the SERC from noon until 4 p.m. There will be more businesses and organizations from the surrounding Rochester area at this event, and over 100 companies in all. You can register on Handshake, which is the new version of what once was Eagle Connect.

 

STYLUS@BROCKPORT.EDU