St Petersburg University has hosted the autumn SPbU Day of Career–2016. The event attracted representatives of 35 Russian and international companies, public bodies, and academic institutions. Top employers helped over 1,500 students to choose their future career.

It is a long time since high-profile employers started seeking out the very best students right at the university leaving competitors no chance of recruiting promising candidates. SPbU Day of Career is a regular event. This time it welcomed – among others – representatives of such companies and organisations as Gazprom Export, Committee of Civil Service and Personnel Policy of the Administration of St. Petersburg, Vedomosti Publishing House , L'Oréal Russia, Nissan, Nokian Tyres, Sberbank of Russia, Google, and Microsoft, who screened prospective employees.  Employers gave lectures to SPbU staff and students, participated in poster sessions and the SPbU Recruitment Fair. Students had a great opportunity to contact employers directly, visit several interactive events and a workshop hosted by Google.

 ‘St Petersburg University is one of the best places to look for talented employees. We know it for sure – Heineken now employs about 40 people with an SPbU education,’ says Maria Burakova, HR Director at Heineken Russia. ‘All of them have a good track record, so we could not possibly miss the Day of Career. Besides, we are a socially responsible employer, so we are here to guide students through the many development and career pathways, to let the students know what awaits them on this exciting journey.’   

Apart from the poster session, SPbU students could attend lectures by leading experts and top managers representing prospective employers and hand over their CVs right after the presentation. Yevgeny Zinin, Director of  RBK Petersburg , gave a guest lecture Freedom and/or Money: New Employment Patterns and Approaches to Career in the 21st Century Economy. He told the students how the modern media help to build a successful career. For example, mass media is a tool for historians and linguists to become opinion leaders sought after by cultural industries, whereas physicists and other STEM professionals advance their careers due to additional competences and social links provided by the media.  

‘Irrespective of specialisation, the academic environment shapes a potential journalist much better than any other school of life – the army, prison, trade or management. The only selection criterion is inquisitiveness seen as a professional principle,’ explains Yevgeny Zinin.

Personal Branding, a workshop hosted by Google, became one of the most interesting interactive events. Tatyana Zakharova from the Google University Programs team gave students tips on successful job interviews with one of the most popular corporations. The session was held in English and students were pre-screened to join it – Google evaluated their questionnaires and looked for experience in management, marketing, and sales, the multitasking ability, motivation and leadership qualities.

‘It was interesting to find out how Google evaluates the jobseekers,’ says Daniil Fetisov, a second-year student on the Master’s Program in Management and a participant of the workshop. ‘It turned out that unlike in many other industries, here HR-managers care about a candidate’s personality. If I happen to be interviewed by Google, I will focus more on different aspects of my personality. The workshop explained how to build a personal brand. For example, you can try to behave so that colleagues perceive you the way you want. All the efforts you put into communication with your colleagues should lead to the desired goal. The most effective way to achieve it is to be in touch with all sorts of people from a range of industries, to be approachable and show your better side.’

The Day of Career2016 showed that, despite the economic downturn, graduates of an established university are highly-sought after in the job market. These meetings do not only facilitate contact between young professionals and prospective employers, but they also open up new opportunities for students to undertake internships in leading businesses.