Commencement fair gives a real world look to undergraduate students

For hundreds of fourth, fifth, sixth and even seventh years, Wednesday Feb. 17 marked the beginning of their last days at Tech as undergraduates with this semester’s commencement fair in the Student Center Ballroom.

Previously called the “graduation fair,” the commencement fair was once limited to a single table at the Barnes and Nobles bookstore at Tech Square.

Over the last year, the fair has grown to include a number of different resources and vendors to serve upcoming college graduates, with about 25 percent of the graduating class attending the first fair during fall semester.

“Basically all students are future alumni. We want to help students build a lifelong connection with Tech while you guys are on campus. We want students to remember their alma mater. We have alumni clubs across the country to help you stay connected with Tech,” said Derek Lee, marketing research analyst for the Alumni Association.

Touted as students’ “one-stop-shop” for commencement needs, the fair gave students an opportunity to take care of everything from purchasing regalias and class rings to taking their picture for Blueprint.

As well, it featured a number of departments and third-parties who provided information concerning homeownership, job searching and higher education.

“We have a committee made up of departments integral to the commencement process including the Alumni Association, the commencement office, graduate studies, the CRC because they do have alumni memberships, the registrar’s office and others,” said Lisa Pusateri, Event Coordinator for Communications and Marketing.

“After coming here I understand that one—I am graduating, and I learned the things I need to do before graduating like signing up for the alumni association, and student foundation. That was definitely helpful,” said Brian Tyson, fifth-year EE major.