Katie Hauge, employer relations manager for Career Services, oversees the Partnership Program to help companies “be strategic regarding their recruitment and engagement activities with the university. By being a sponsor, partners can plan out an entire year of engagement and recruitment activities that will help them meet their goals,” she said.
“Every little bit helps when it comes to attracting talented graduates,” Abbott continued. “We try to take advantage of any opportunity we can. We look at it as a win-win for both Menards and Stout and plan to keep building our relationship.”
For example, at the recent Spring Career Conference, which was held virtually and attracted more than 150 employers, Menards representatives took part in individual, group and general information recruiting sessions.
Also, the company networked with students by participating in a preconference student Retail Association event. UW-Stout has a major in fashion and retail.
Menards career fields numerous
Menards has job opportunities for UW-Stout graduates from many undergraduate and graduate academic areas, including engineering, retail, business administration, design, construction, information technology, supply chain, communications, digital marketing and more.
One of Menards’ deeper connections with UW-Stout is through Career Services’ Cooperative Education and Internship Program. For the 2019-20 academic year, UW-Stout students had a total of 28 internship positions, some students with more than one, across all Menards divisions.
One of the goals of co-ops and internships is to familiarize students with a company so that they consider a full-time opportunity upon graduation. Menards hired 15 UW-Stout graduates from 2019-20.
In the past three academic years, Menards has filled numerous intern positions plus hired many UW-Stout graduates full time. The university’s co-op and internship program partners with roughly 600 companies annually to support applied learning experiences for more than 1,000 students.
Despite in-person challenges the past year, Menards has pushed ahead with recruiting. “It’s been a change for us not to be able to get in front of students,” Abbott said. “We appreciate everything that Stout has done to help us with recruiting, especially during these highly unusual times.”
Hauge said the job outlook for graduates is improving from 2020. “Employers are hiring, and some have never stopped,” she said.