THE QUEENSLAND law careers fair has been called off this year, after Brisbane firms got together and decided not to take part.
Previously the careers fair has been held in August or September, while graduate and summer clerkship recruitment programs were held between March and June.
However, it is understood that firms have decided to push back their graduate recruitment dates in 2008 from March until July or August and therefore decided it would be more beneficial if the fair were held just prior to that. As a result, the next fair looks set to be around April 2008.
Susan Fisher, graduate recruitment liaison at Allens Arthur Robinson who was on the Careers Fair organising committee last year said the change was not intended to disadvantage students.
“It makes more sense for the fair to be closer to the time [of recruitment] because we have found people weren’t because they weren’t thinking about it yet,” Fisher said.
The careers fair has traditionally been organised by the various Queensland law students’ societies in conjunction with the law firms, but that looks likely to change too, with firms looking for a central provider to co-ordinate the running of the fair.
Gerard Hinchliffe, president of the University of Queensland Law Students’ Society said that as a final year law student the lack of a careers fair was frustrating but that law firms were missing out too.
“With a big careers fair most students can walk up and talk to someone from a firm straight away and get a feel for it and they can do this with a lot of firms all on one day. Now a lot more is thrown back on to students to go out and find the information that they want,” he said.
“Finding out information on the internet is one thing but it’s completely different to talk to someone in person. That’s also a disadvantage for law firms because they are losing that chance for brand recognition,” he said.
Hinchliffe said firms would be making a more concerted effort to visit university campuses individually to conduct recruitment campaigns, but that this was a lot less convenient for everyone involved.