Chinese and English Career Fair draws 150 students


Jillian Alt/Iowa State Daily

The Chinese English Career fair is held in the Great Hall in the Memorial Union on Sunday night. 

Zhe (Mia) Wang

To avoid the obstacle of visa sponsorship, more than 150 students attended the second annual Chinese and English Bilingual Career Fair hosted by the Chinese Students and Scholars Association (CSSA) on Sunday night at the Great Hall in Memorial Union.

The Chinese and English Bilingual Career Fair is designed for students who speak Chinese fluently, which makes Chinese international students the main student body of the event.

In most career fairs hosted by the university or different colleges, students often see signs on the companies’ booths saying: “We do not hire international students. These positions need candidates to be authorized to work in the U.S. with no current or future visa sponsorship.”

Jinglei Huang, senior in management and career development minister for CSSA, organized this year’s bilingual career fair with her department coworkers. She said the purpose of this career fair is to reduce international students’ frustration when try to find jobs.

“Many companies in other career fairs don’t hire international students,” Huang said. “I see so many students spend hours, even days preparing for job interviews in career fairs, but end up not even having the chance to talk to employers because of the sponsorship restrictions.

“That can really take a toll on students, both mentally and physically.”

All the employers in the Chinese and English Bilingual Career Fair prefer to recruit Chinese international students or students who speak Chinese, because most of them have business partnerships with Chinese clients.

“Companies in the bilingual career fair can find the talents they need, and the students are able to talk to employers without obstruction. It’s just a win-win situation,” said Huang.

On Sunday night, 20 American companies tabled at the career fair and 30 Chinese companies represented by CSSA workers were also present. The workers collected students’ resumes and sent them back to employers in China to be evaluated.

Ziteng Zhang graduated from Indiana University Bloomington and co-founded a marketing and advertising company called AmiaUnion. He wanted to recruit students in public relations and marketing.

“I got the news about this event from the president of Iowa State’s CSSA, and many companies in today’s career fairs are our clients,” Zhang said. “I think it would be nice to come and find some potential employees.”

Yangyidi Ye is the managing partner of Causey & Ye Law, P.L.L.C. She said her company provides law services for Chinese companies, Chinese international students and Chinese residents.

“I really look forward to this bilingual career fair,” Ye said. “I am an Iowa State graduate and I know the population of International students in Iowa State is quite large. I think they need a bigger platform and more opportunities to apply their knowledge to the workforce. So, we want to give our positions to as many international students as we can.”

Yingzhou Sun, student in business specials, was trying to find an internship for this summer. He said the bilingual career fair helped him gain insight information on job hunting.

“There are lots of international students who already found jobs representing the companies today,” Sun said. “They are willing to offer me help and inside knowledge of how to find jobs as a Chinese international student, which allows me learn valuable lessons while staying in my cultural comfort zone.”

Ziyang Yu is a graduate student in computer engineering. He thinks it’s crucial for a school to have this type of bilingual career fair where employers prioritize international students who can be excluded at some career fairs.

“International students would have more opportunities to get job or internship offers in this career fair than others,” Yu said. “They would also have more time and stand in shorter lines to talk to employers and recruiters.”