Companies Flock to Gainesville for Annual Industry Expo

Monday, February 19, 2024
By: Kyle Niblett

A total of 83 design and planning firms made up of architects, interior designers, sustainability majors, landscape architects and urban and regional planners attended day one of the annual University of Florida College of Design, Construction and Planning Industry Expo Monday afternoon. The bottom floor of the Stephen C. O’Connell Center was flooded as more than 300 registered students showed up seeking internships and full-time jobs.

“I am immensely proud of the vibrant energy and enthusiasm witnessed at today’s career fair,” Dean Chimay Anumba said. “This event served as a nexus of opportunity, connecting our aspiring architects, planners, landscape architects, and sustainability students with leading firms eager to harness their talents and passion for shaping the future.”

Students cerebrally walked up and down the rows for five hours, intently passing out resumes, reviewing their noteworthy portfolios with recruiters and trading business cards like graded trading cards. Companies were reminded all day long about why DCP has a 100 percent job placement rate.

“I have had a chance to work with interns from this college before and they come prepared,” said Jaysen Williams, a talent recruitment manager for CHW Professional Consultants. “They are able to live up to our name of professional consultants, and so I just enjoy the opportunity to build and work with them because they come ready to work.”

For junior architecture student Jon Loferski, the quality of teaching DCP provides made him feel like he was more than prepared in taking the next step professionally.

“My professors have done a really good job of instilling creativity in us, and I think that knowing how to think creatively with structure is something I can easily implement into any one of these firms in attendance today.”

Following the day-long event, job seekers networked with professionals at the DCP Industry Expo After Hours event, where food and drinks were provided, and conversation flowed freely in a more informal setting.

“I love the opportunity the DCP Industry Expo gives our students as they network and foster connections for successful experiences in the field,” Interior Design Professor Genesis Okken said. “Their confident interactions with industry professionals highlight the essential role of networking in shaping successful careers. Today’s accomplishments underscore the importance of developing meaningful relationships and showcasing individual talents— essential elements for thriving in the dynamic world of interior design.”

Dean Anumba agreed.

“Today was a testament to the dedication and excellence of our students and the enduring relevance of our programs in driving innovation and positive change in the built environment.”

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