Student Writer Neil provides a review of the latest MDXworks employability fair
Middlesex University hosted its first ever Gradstock in The Quad on 16 May. An employability fair with a difference, it was a resounding success.
With plenty of employers across a range of different industries, there was something for everyone. As soon as you walked into The Quad there was a relaxed atmosphere, music playing, a signing wall and a LinkedIn photo booth. Perhaps most importantly, however, there was free Vietnamese-style street food for those who’d reserved their tickets!
Alongside the exhibitors’ booths there was a strong Middlesex presence with the Students’ Union and chill out zones, creating a real festival feeling. This was helped by Ikea, whose stand was always busy and seemed to have brought half the shop with them! It felt more like sitting in a living room than talking to prospective employers.
The Swedish interiors giants shared space with Middlesex’s own chill out area, full of comfy bean bags and places to relax - needless to say, a very popular stop. Hive were in a similar area; a creative industries networking hub, they loved the MDX welcome and being able to chat to students, staff and alumni about their career opportunities.
Hive and Ikea weren’t the only companies on display - LiFE Residential, an innovative property firm specialising in new London apartments, were thrilled by the response from attendees, with many coming especially to see them (and who will be getting a call tomorrow!).
Sparta Global, who already work very closely with Middlesex, were similarly excited to take part in Gradstock. A technology and business consultancy company, Sparta Global has partnered with the university to deliver assessment centre training, presentations and workshops. Not only were they lovely to talk to, they brought some fascinating examples of their projects as a leading IT company.
Two of the slightly more unusual companies present were Cyber-Duck and Ogilvy Change; Cyber-Duck offers web and app development, and the company arrived with graduate vacancies for coding, project management and computer science graduates.
Ogilvy Change are at their core an advertising agency, focusing on changing behaviour - but with a twist. Full of attitude and a dynamic mindset, they made an impact with a lot of students, including me! Both companies were very happy about the interest that was expressed by many students and were excited about future prospects with Middlesex.
Overall, Gradstock was brilliant: so many companies all wanting to recruit Middlesex students is incredible to see, and there were a variety of opportunities on offer, from internships to career schemes via on-the-job training. The vibe of the event was relaxed and chilled out, making it a lot easier to talk to people manning the stalls without feeling nervous. All things considered, I can’t wait for the next one!