You need experience to gain experience. This is the challenge that many students and graduates face when entering the workforce: Securing a job in your field often requires experience from outside a tradition classroom setting.
The Trent University Volunteer Fair, hosted by Careerspace, is one of the many ways the University works to support students in their next career steps. Trent is committed to ensuring that every student has access to work, placement, volunteer and co-op opportunities before they graduate.
New and returning organizations continue to draw students
This year, over 150 students attended the event and were able to explore volunteer opportunities with the Ontario Provincial Police Auxiliary Program, Peterborough Regional Health Centre, and Absolute Internship among others.
Students who take advantage of experiential learning opportunities are better positioned to enter the workforce. In turn, employers benefit by gaining direct access to skilled students for a short period of time.
Experience learning benefits everyone
Employers like the Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre have benefitted from access to Trent students in volunteer roles for more than a decade. During that time, the organization has brought on more than 500 student volunteers.
“The Trent University Volunteer Fair is a major driver of volunteers to our organization.” said Isa Knor, volunteer coordinator with the Ontario Turtle Conservation Centre. “We are always so excited to take part and to get so many knowledgeable Trent students coming to help our turtles.”
Students studying Forensics were excited to have the opportunity to speak with the Ontario Provincial Police (O.P.P.) at the fair. The excitement was reciprocated by the officers who spoke highly of their experience engaging with Trent students.
"It’s been a pleasure to attend the Volunteer Fair and speak with so many students about the O.P.P. auxiliary program. I'm very impressed with the caliber of questions coming from Trent students. We are actively hiring and looking forward to seeing applications from Trent University [students]." said Prov. Const. Dawn LeFevre of the O.P.P.
Students impressed with number of opportunities within Peterborough community
A big highlight of this year’s Volunteer Fair were the number of opportunities available – both in-person and online. With over 30 organizations in attendance in-person and another 70 online, students found a wide variety of opportunities to explore.
Trent students Abigail Varga and Olivia Luttrell visited many of the booths at the Volunteer Fair.
“It’s given me the opportunity to see what community outreach is here in Peterborough. I know coming from a bit of a bigger city, you don’t really see opportunities like these being presented to you as a student.” said Abigail.
“I think it’s really great that there’s a lot of different things here. You can go out to of different areas in the community and to places further away.” added Olivia.
Students interested in more information regarding work and experiential learning opportunities can contact Careerspace.