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By Amber Nichols, Special Correspondent

The CIAA Career Expo hosts dozens of companies seeking students for college internships and jobs after graduation.

They include the F.B.I., the U.S. Coast Guard, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. Inc., Novant Health, a variety of public schools and police departments from around the area.

According to the CIAA Tournament website, students are encouraged to bring their resume and a “quick pitch” to voice their experience, skills and interests.

Students’ resumes should display experience related to their major, volunteer work and a list of courses related to their major.2017 ciaatrn logo

Students' “quick pitch” should be no longer than 8-10 seconds. Your name, hometown, major, school you attend, and your future career plans should be stated in your pitch as well.

Students should always dress "business professional" for this event. Business attire for women consists of black, blue, dark gray or brown skirt or pant suit.

Skirt suits are recommended, and skirts should come a little below the knee with nude or dark-colored pantyhose.

Shirts should be collared and dress shoes can be heels or flats. Heels should not be higher than 2.5 inches. Jewelry, hair and makeup should be kept moderate.

Men’s business professional entails a full suit with matching jacket and pants with a black belt.

Shirts should be collared as well with solid, stripe or simple pattern tie. Dark-leather dress shoes with dress socks. The bottom of the tie should not cover the entire belt and no cologne should be worn.


The Career Expo will be on Thursday, February 23, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Charlotte Convention Center. There will be professional development sessions held at 10:30 a.m. and at noon.

There are also networking opportunities for those persons in middle and high school and the CIAA Education Day, which reaches over 5,000 middle and high school students with programs for each age group.

Students who attend this event will meet college recruiters from North Carolina, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Virginia to learn tips on how to prepare for college.

The High School Program (HSP) will be held from 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., while the Middle School Program (MSP) will be from 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. The events will start with an opening session that includes a welcome and remarks, panel discussions regarding preparing for college and beyond, student and teacher recognitions, and an inspirational speaker.

For the high school program, there will also be a special presentation honoring students with 4.0 grade point averages. All attendees will have the opportunity to visit the various CIAA institutions’ booths and event vendors.

The program is free to middle and high school students from the Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools, as well as surrounding North Carolina counties and other states.

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~ Amber Nichols is a junior Public Relations major at N.C. A&T State University.


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