Engineering career fair here at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign this year went paperless for the first time. The large pamphlets that has always been part of the career fair that included which companies are here, in which booths the companies are located, what types of students the companies are looking for, and other information, were gone. Instead, all of the information and the hundreds of pieces of paper that would have made up the pamphlets were transformed into a single mobile app. All of the students were notified of this and given a reminder a couple of days before the career fair to come with the app downloaded.
When I first heard about the career fair going paperless, I had mixed feelings about it. I have gotten used to using the pamphlets after using it for the last three years, and I was scared that I would not have as an easy time using the app. I was initially scared of the change. However, the more thought I put into it, I realized that the app might not be such a bad idea; it might even improve the environment and possibly be easier to use. My friends in general had a negative viewpoint on the change before the days of the career fair. Why change something that has been working? What if someone doesn’t have a smart phone? Why do we have to rely on technology for everything?
When I first got to the career fair, I instantly started liking the new change after I realized that I don’t have to carry the thick pamphlet the whole time. I did not miss walking around the crowded gym while vigorously flipping through the pamphlet pages. Throughout the career fair, I realized that there were other benefits of having the mobile app. The information was organized into subcategories in the app that made it easy to find any information that you want. Also, there were new information in the app that the pamphlets didn’t have before. The mobile app had an overview of what the company does for every company that attended the career fair and all the information sessions that the companies were hosting. The mobile app saved me from wasting a lot of time and made my whole experience way better.
Almost everyone that I talked to after the career fair liked using the app. Even my friends who were skeptical of the idea before changed their minds. Technology is being integrated into everything, and we should keep an open mind to new technologies. I am excited to see how much the career fair will change in the future.