The Spring Career Fair and You!

Image courtesy of UNL's Career Services
Image courtesy of UNL's Career Services

UNL's Spring Career Fair has arrived. The biggest day for Computer Science and Computer Engineering students is this Thursday, February 13, though many of the representatives are also here today. The time is 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the City Campus Union. My message to all my advisees is to check it out, even if you are just a freshman seeing programming for the first time. Get experience working the floor and visiting with the representatives BEFORE you are seriously looking. Sophomore year is not too early for many students to find significant internship opportunities.

Go to and look under "Student Information" for complete information. "Participating Employers" takes you to a searchable database while "Day 1" and "Day 2" provide handy pdf packets. Check out the link to "Tips for the Career Fair" for guidelines on how to prepare and what to expect.

I go to the career fairs regularly, spending hours talking to the representatives, some of whom are former students of mine. My goal is to find out what their expansion plans may be, their needs for hiring permanent employees and arrangements for internships, the skill sets they are looking for, and more. At the Fall Career Fair, I estimated the immediate need was for over 700 computing graduates, which is about 10 times the number of graduates we will produce this year! Most of those companies are back again this week.

There are the usual big-name software corporations, major specialized information technology companies including Cerner and Epic, and firmware/hardware companies like Garmin. In addition there are a host of excellent smaller companies right in the Lincoln/Omaha area.

For those with the inspiration and patience to look around among all the 200+ companies being represented at the Spring Career Fair, there will be some wonderful opportunities. Nearly all of the companies, regardless of the product, have computing needs. Some work is farmed out, some have other sites where it is done, some have it done locally.

Occasionally there is a substantial computing component that might easily be missed. For instance, a couple years ago I checked on John Deere, the tractor manufacturers. I had recently helped my brother calibrate a fancy device that utilized GPS and interfaced to his planter. Indeed, John Deere was looking for Computer Engineers to work on this technology. Union Pacific has massive computing needs in monitoring the entire rail system and scheduling just-in-time shipping with its clients.

Below is my list of must visit companies, which is based on past experiences and current promotions. But it may be wise to not neglect the gems I might have missed!

Questions? Come find me! I will gladly share whatever information I pick up.

Charles Riedesel
Chief Undergraduate Advisor
Computer Science & Engineering
259 Avery Hall
402 472-3486

Avionics Interface Technologies (Omaha)
Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp. (local and other locations)
Cerner (KC)
Design Data Corp (local)
Epic Systems (Wisconsin)
First Data (local)
Fiserv (local)
Gallup (Omaha)
Garmin (KC)
Hayneedle (local)
Hudl (local)
Hyland Software (local)
NE Administrative Services – State Personnel Division
Peace Corps (guess what - not local!)
Pen-Link (local)
Sandhills Publishing (local)
Software Technology, Inc. (local)
Union Pacific Railroad (Omaha)
US Air Force (varies)
VMInnovations (local)
Xpanxion, LLC (GA, IA, KS, NE)
Zillow (local and other locations)