MANKATO — Seventeen years ago Kathy Sanger went to a career fair in Mankato and was hired by Rasmussen College, where she still works today.
Now campus director, Sanger loves to show the hundreds of students at Rasmussen how effective career expos can be. That’s why the college offers its Career and Networking Expo twice a year, and that’s why dozens of employers show up to recruit new talent.
“There are jobs in Mankato,” Sanger said, adding that landing a good one often involves meeting the right people.
Amelia Howell was one of the Rasmussen students taking advantage of the opportunity of having employers come to her. Just two quarters into an LPN nursing program, Howell said she’s ready for some practical, hands-on experience in the health-care field.
Howell attended Thursday’s expo to look for volunteer opportunities as well as network with companies, such as Harry Meyering Center, to look into working overnight shifts to coincide with her daytime school schedule.
On her way to eventually earning her RN degree and becoming a nurse practitioner, Howell said events like the career expo help her meet people who could one day hire her as a nurse, she said.
Gail Miller, program director for REM Heartland, was one of the employers at the expo looking for staff just like Howell. Thursday was Miller’s first time at Rasmussen’s expo, and she said the event helps introduce people to the field. It’s also an opportunity to meet people who have family members who may need REM’s services, she said.
Miller has worked for REM for 37 years, and she said the company would be appealing to a wide range of workers.
“We’re known for having a home-like atmosphere,” she said. “You do a wide variety of things, and we treat each resident as an individual. ... We provide all the training they need.”