More than 160 exhibitors came to the University of Limerick to speak to graduates on 4 October. Want to know what they’re looking for?
In August, we put the spotlight on graduates to help them find their feet as they leave education and take their next steps into the world.
Hundreds of top sci-tech companies are always looking for bright new graduates with passion and drive. So, we headed down to the University of Limerick (UL) Careers Fair last week (4 October) to talk to some of the top firms and find out what they were looking for.
UL careers adviser Brendan Lally said UL was seeing more and more organisations wanting to take part in the careers fair. “We have 165 exhibitors with 7,000 jobs,” he said. “We’re absolutely delighted with the turnout here today.”
Some of the biggest names in tech and science were in attendance to speak to budding young graduates including Accenture, Shire and Jaguar Land Rover.
Tomás Maher, technology consulting analyst at Accenture, said the firm takes people from all backgrounds. “Science, engineering, arts, business – whatever you’ve studied,” he said. “But we want people who are problem-solvers, people who are adaptable, and people who are willing to get involved and do more than just what their regular job would be.”
Robert Stone said that for EY, there is no ideal candidate. “We’ve such a diverse range of backgrounds currently working in EY.” Stone said that the company is hiring for traditional business and accounting but also non-traditional, technology-based roles.
HR executive for PwC, Karla Kelly, said that the firm is looking for candidates who are both academically strong and interested in extracurricular activities. She said the ideal candidate is someone “who gets involved in lots of projects”.
Careers in life sciences
It wasn’t just the tech giants and professional consultancy firms that were in attendance at the UL Careers Fair. Many major biopharma and life sciences brands were there looking to recruit some of the best talent as well.
Lisa McDonald is a senior bioprocess engineer for Shire. She said the company, which specialises in rare diseases, is looking for “enthusiastic, outgoing people that are looking to commit to continuous improvement, to taking action, to really having pride in their job”.
Johnson & Johnson Vision Care was also present, looking for candidates that have proper engineering principles as well as an ability to adapt and take on challenges.
Medtech giant BD is looking for people with a science background, but also those who come from software engineering, and various mechanical and electronic engineering backgrounds.
BD recruiter Lisa Donnellan said the ideal candidate would be passionate, will have done a lot of research into the company and will know where they want to go in the future.
With thousands of jobs up for grabs from a wide variety of companies, graduates are spoiled for choice.
In order to stand out from the crowd, it seems that passion and agility are key, as well as the ability to learn and the desire to take on new challenges.