NEWPORT – At an early March job fair, the Naval Undersea Warfare Center reported nearly 300 individuals were interested in employment with the company and 26 were offered positions on the spot, according to recent Providence Business News communication with the organization.
“There was a lot of energy in the room, a lot of buzz,” said Jeffrey D. Prater, NUWC’s director of public affairs and congressional affairs.
Held March 3, the job fair saw 294 attendees visit the NUWC’s Newport headquarters to learn more about the hiring opportunity. At the event, NUWC specifically highlighted its interest in scientists, engineers, mathematicians, physicists and information technology professionals of varied experience ranging from entry-level to mature career professionals.
Of the 26 offers made that Saturday, Prater said “that was more than we imagined; [the event] turned out really well.”
NUWC officials offered on-site interviews at the fair. One trend Prater says he saw that he had not yet experienced was prospective applicants asking permission for their significant other or classmate to sit in on the interview with them.
It’s a “different sort of support mechanism,” he said, and “might be the way millennials are trying to do things.”
Per NUWC requirements, those applying for employment with the firm must have a bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate degree in one of the following fields: computer science, engineering, mathematics, physics or information technology.
Prater said he was impressed by the quality of applicants who showed up to the fair. Afterward, one of the NUWC officials conducting interviews told Prater he had spoken with three consecutive interviewees who held 3.99 GPAs.
Such a high quality of applicant, added Prater, “will only help the workforce.”
Additionally, due to the NUWC’s frequent U.S. Department of Defense contracts, all applicants must be U.S. citizens and be able to obtain and maintain a security clearance. Also, male applicants must be registered for selective service, a form of military conscription.
The March job fair comes after two additional fairs were conducted in other parts of the country – both in February. A trip to the Feb. 8-10 Black Engineer of the Year Award conference held in Washington, D.C., resulted in the hiring of six applicants. Seventeen were hired after an NUWC contingent traveled to San Juan, Puerto Rico, to visit the Universidad Interamericana and Polytechnic University of Puerto Rico and the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez.
Prater said the date of the next NUWC job fair is yet to be determined.