The Scarlet Knights of Rutgers may now compete in the Big Ten on the athletic fields, but the state university based at the northern end of the Route 1 corridor has not forgotten its home base. Rutgers will host its 51st semi-annual New Jersey Collegiate Career Day on Thursday, January 3, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Rutgers Student Center and at Brower Commons on College Avenue.

The event is free and open to the public — not just Rutgers students. In a statement for the event program the interim director of Rutgers Career Services, Janet Jones, said that the university “anticipated 2,500 job seekers from Rutgers and some 200 other colleges and universities. We are also pleased to host over 150 employers, representing a wide range of organizations from the corporate, nonprofit, and government sectors and look forward to this continued partnership in sourcing talent both from Rutgers University and the surrounding area.”

Among the U.S. 1-area employers represented will be Billtrust, Church & Dwight, WKXW 101.5, ADP, Miles Technologies, AmeriHealth, Eden Autism Services, and Northwestern Mutual, as well as some from as far away at Seattle, Washington, and Lombard, Illinois.

The career fair program, available online at http://careerservices.rutgers.edu, reveals job opportunities that you might not even guess from a Google search. For example, the U.S. Department of Agriculture will be represented through its plant protection quarantine program known as APHIS, based at 350 Corporate Boulevard in Robbinsville. The USDA is searching for a biologist.

Job prospects for graduates appear to be improving, according to the Rutgers Career Services people. The federal Bureau of Labor Statistics recently reported that employment increased by 146,000 jobs in November, with a decline in the unemployment rate to 7.7 percent, the lowest since December, 2008.

“The outlook for graduates is brighter than in recent years,” said Jones. “The National Association of Colleges and Employers also reports that the unemployment rate for new college graduates fell significantly from 8.3 percent in September, 2011, to 6.3 percent in September, 2012.”

Rutgers Career Services advises job seekers to bring hard copies of their resumes for employers. Business attire is strongly recommended. Free shuttle buses will transport candidates to and from parking areas at the Scarlet Parking Lot West near Rutgers High Point Solutions football stadium in Piscataway between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Parking is available on the College Avenue Campus for employers only.

Employers and candidates may find additional information including directions, parking instructions, career day tips, and a roster of employers at http://careerservices.rutgers.edu.

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