March 13, 2013 12:00AM
Pittsburg State University’s Spring Career Day wasn’t the only thing delayed by the snow earlier this spring. It also caused Frank Bartonek, a senior engineering specialist with Cessna Aircraft, to put off some important hiring decisions. Bartonek said he didn’t want to make those hires without first talking to Pitt State students.
Bartonek was one of five people representing Cessna at PSU’s Spring Career Day on Wednesday. About 80 companies and organizations participated.
“I have positions to fill,” Bartonek said. “We’re looking for students with technical and design skills.”
It was familiar ground for Bartonek, who is also a 1977 PSU grad who majored in electrical technology.
Across the ballroom, Jason Brown, Kansas City Metro district manager for Fastenal, was meeting with business and marketing majors. Brown said Spring Career Day is part of a process that has his rapidly growing company on the PSU campus almost monthly.
“We’re looking for that hard-working kid who can relate to the blue-collar customer one day and to white-collar the next,” Brown said. “They need to be sales oriented. Communication skills are key.”
As students wove their way through the rows of brightly colored booths in the Overman Student Center, Mindy Cloninger, director of career services, seemed both pleased and relieved.
“We were concerned about how the rescheduling might affect participants,” Cloninger said. “We couldn’t be happier with the strong participation by businesses and agencies. I think it says something good about an improving job market and also about the high regard companies have for our graduates.”