May 9, 2022 - Radeeyah Zaman Khan
Do you find yourself lost in a sea of career choices and steps to secure a job? To guide young job seekers through this overwhelming process, BYLC organized the Career Expo 2022. During the COVID-19 pandemic, due to budget cuts, and work-from-home situations, there is a scarcity of job vacancies, moreover, freshers who are graduating online are increasingly frustrated as they did not get to attend career fairs or any similar opportunities that would allow them to network or provide them tips. The expo was inaugurated on February 18th, 2022, and concluded on March 5th, 2022. Over the 3 week duration, 400+ youth, 32 employers, and many esteemed speakers and guests have participated. The most prominent topic of discussion was that learning is an ongoing process.
The event was divided into sections, the first phase consisted of refresher workshops, which focused on customizing resumes, effective job applications, skill assessment tests, and acing interviews. The second phase consisted of plenaries where respected career professionals from a variety of fields shared career advice with the participants and job showcasing by different employers from a wide range of fields. Lastly, the career expo provided the participants with an opportunity to sit for interviews with multiple organizations at BYLC headquarters, from where many got selected for job openings. We interviewed some of the participants to hear from them directly about how their experience was, and let us read what they had to say.
“I am a final year student, and to be able to secure a job immediately after graduation I joined the Career Expo 2022, where I got to learn directly from industry experts about the kind of skills they are looking for, we also got 2 days of mock interview sessions, where we not only got to sit for interviews but also attended focus-group discussions but most importantly we got to build our network. It was an amazing experience,” said Aftahi Noyon, Management Student at the University of Barisal
“After attending the career expo, I got called for an interview at MilVik Bangladesh, and today after attending a second interview I got a job offer from them, I am so happy! I learned skills such as communication, public speaking, and teamwork from the Career Expo which helped me during the interview. I am grateful for this experience,” said Mohammad Saifur Rahman, BBA Graduate Titumir College.
“I got to meet a lot of employers at the Career Expo and was interviewed by a few. We got a lot of information here which is not available on the internet. Especially considering the COVID-19 situation, as freshers, we were getting frustrated with the process of looking for jobs, so I would like to thank BYLC and the OPD team for arranging such a great opportunity and platform for students to learn from,” said Saidul Alam Rahat, BBA, NSU.
Three plenaries were held during this expo, where the discussions revolved around leadership skills in a changing world, critical thinking, problem-solving, and career opportunities in earth-friendly jobs. The reputed speakers who made their remarks were State Minister of the Ministry of Power, Energy, and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid, MP, State Minister of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Md. Shahriar Alam, MP, Trustee for the Centre for Research and Information (CRI), Radwan Mujib Siddiq, Ambassador of Denmark to Bangladesh Winnie Estrup Petersen, Dutch Ambassador Anne van Leeuwen, Member of Parliament, Nahim Razzaq, World Bank’s Country Director for Bangladesh and Bhutan, Mercy Miyang Tembon, CEO of Grameenphone Yasir Azman, CEO of Standard Chartered Bank Malaysia Abrar Anwar, Senior Policy Advisor Economic Affairs & CSR, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Bangladesh Mahjabeen Quader, and Founder and Managing Director of SOLshare Sebastian Groh. The plenaries were moderated by BYLC governing body member Farzana Kashfi and BYLC president Ejaj Ahmad. These sessions allowed the participants to understand the career-building necessities from different perspectives, as different career experts shared their stories with the participants.
“The career Expo allowed us to listen to respectable speakers in different plenaries, who work in different fields. They shared their years of work experience with us from which we got to learn the dos and don’ts of building a career, and got the opportunity to ask career-related questions from them. Overall, it was an amazing experience,” said Wajiha Tarannum Chowdhury, a participant at the Career Expo.
The employers and participating organizations were pleased to be able to conduct interviews in person and were impressed with the grooming provided to the participants.
“We got a lot of great candidates who we interviewed, and the success rate was 70% for candidates who would be getting a call for a second interview. We would stay connected with BYLC for future expos too,” said Saima Nusrat Shorna, HR Manager, Shikho Technologies Bangladesh.
“This is the first time we are collaborating with BYLC. We interviewed a list of shortlisted candidates for different positions at our organization. BYLC has groomed the candidates well, how to attend an interview, what kind of knowledge they should have, how to communicate, or their professional manners. We are hopeful we will be hiring a few of the candidates. Since our experience has been wonderful, moving forward we would prioritize BYLC candidates for future job prospects,” said Tamanna Sultana, Assistant Manager, Jatri.
A career is a lifelong journey full of challenges and growth, but getting started is often the hardest part. Finding a suitable job depends on many factors, but if you treat your job search as a project and follow best practices, it significantly increases your chances of finding good opportunities that you can convert into job offers. Do not fret if you have missed out on this opportunity because BYLC has always got plenty of programs up for grabs and is bringing you a brand new Development Sector Career Bootcamp soon.
Keep your eyes on our social media platforms for further announcements.