(WACO) – More than 650 Texas State Technical College students met potential employers from throughout Texas on Thursday at its Industry Job Fair.
Two lift trucks provided by Versalift in Waco were parked at the corner of Campus Drive and Scott Circle in front of the Murray Watson Jr. Student Recreation Center, where more than 100 businesses set up tables and displays. This was the largest Industry Job Fair the campus has ever held.
Bruce Hardt, Versalift’s human resources director, said the company was looking for students to fill welding, production assistant, service technician, warehouse parts puller, panting and other positions that are available right now.
“We are a local company and TSTC is local, and we need to capture people to keep them here,” Hardt said. “We have had a lot of traffic today. It’s been good.”
Representatives of Austin-based Aerotek were seeking to meet students to fill technology, manufacturing, maintenance and engineering positions. Jaime Valdez, an Aerotek commercial account manager, said he was collecting resumes from students throughout the morning.
“We try to get to a lot of the job fairs to find fresh students,” said Valdez. “The tech schools are our niche.”
Jacob Matson, an instrumentation department supervisor at Samsung Austin Semiconductor, was looking to meet instrumentation students. The Austin company has more than 3,000 employees and is one of the largest semiconductor manufacturing facilities in the United States.
“Emerging technology requires emerging talent,” Matson said.
Tractor Supply Co., which has locations throughout Central Texas, has openings for material handlers and maintenance mechanics. Ashley R. Willis, a company human resources specialist in Waco, said there are plans to expand to at least 2,000 stores nationwide in the next five years.
“We have positions that need to be filled,” Willis said. “We are a rapidly growing company. We open a new store every four days around the country. We would like to build a great connection with TSTC.”
Sara Mardanbigi, a traveling recruiter for Torchy’s Tacos in Austin, did not bring samples of the restaurant’s popular gourmet tacos. But, she did bring details of supply chain, information technology and maintenance technician positions available. Torchy’s Tacos has 60 locations in Colorado, Oklahoma and Texas and has plans to move into other states.
Some TSTC alumni worked at tables representing B&W Energy Services in Deer Park and ProPetro Services Inc. in Midland.
Jason Lehrmann graduated in 2017 from TSTC with associate degrees in Environmental Technology Compliance and Occupational Safety Compliance Technology. He began an internship with Manitou Group in May and was hired full time as soon as he graduated in August. Lehrmann is a safety supervisor and human resources assistant at the company that produces telehandlers, backhoe loaders, aerial work platforms and other heavy equipment.
“It feels really good seeing the students I went to school with and coming to the table,” Lehrmann said.
Some students planning to graduate this semester were figuring out their future work plans.
Ann-Marie Garza, a Web Design and Development Technology major from McGregor, said she became interested in web design after being encouraged by a high school teacher to pursue the field to study.
“Right now, I’m just trying to get an idea of where I want to work, so any job will do,” she said. “But, this is really helpful in getting started.”
Jaren Gillis, 24, of Waco is studying Cyber Security and has attended previous campus employment events. He said he always starts out walking around the student recreation center and then zeroing in on specific businesses.
“I think it’s always good seeing what the market looks like and to talk to the employers and seeing what they look for,” Gillis said.
William Hammond, an aviation maintenance student from Groesbeck, said the companies represented know TSTC’s students come with ample hands-on experience that sets them above others.
“I’m looking for a job that pays well and offers good benefits and retirement,” he said. “I have to start thinking long term, and these companies here are ready to offer that.”
For more information on Texas State Technical College, go to tstc.edu.