- GW Home
- About GW
- University Life
- News & Events
- Faculty And Staff
GW to Host Startup DC Student Career Expo March 5
February 29, 2012
The first of its kind, the regional career fair will feature up to 85 startups looking to employ students.
On March 5, up to 85 startups will gather in George Washington’s Marvin Center to find students for jobs and internships at their growing companies. The first career fair to exclusively feature startups, the Startup DC Student Career Expo was created through a partnership with Startup DC, Georgetown University, the University of Maryland, George Mason University and George Washington.
The expo will begin at 1 p.m. in the Marvin Center’s Continental and Grand Ballrooms.
“The expo is bringing dozens of the hottest startups with hundreds of opportunities specifically geared toward current and graduating students,” said Jim Chung, director of GW’s Office of Entrepreneurship. “This is a unique opportunity to connect with so many exciting internship and job opportunities.”
Startup DC is part of the Startup America Partnership, which was launched by the White House last year to provide resources and support for young companies.
Participating startups include LivingSocial, WeddingWire, which uses technology to consolidate resources for wedding planning, and FightMetric, the official statistics provider of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Students are attending from a number of area universities, including Howard University, James Madison University, the University of Richmond and the Johns Hopkins Carey Business School.
At the expo, Liz Palmer, university relations manager for LivingSocial, said her startup is looking to meet candidates for various entry-level roles from business operations to sales, and to network with students who are interested in LivingSocial part-time internships this fall and next spring.
“I think [the expo] is innovative and nontraditional as it is focused on startups,” said Ms. Palmer. “LivingSocial is proud of being a larger startup in the Washington, D.C.-area, and we want to build our brand at GW so that students understand the different roles and internship opportunities that are available.”
Another participating expo, Audax Health, offers a social health platform called Careverge, which enables consumers to actively engage in their healthcare, including recording fitness goals, researching conditions and communicating directly with other members and medical professionals.
Located on the Georgetown waterfront, the company offers a unique and casual working environment for its employees, including free healthcare, flexible work hours, games, catered lunches and off-hour social events.
“We've created an environment where people actually want to come to work and make a difference in people’s daily lives,” said Chief Technology Officer Thor Ernstsson.
Elias Shams, M.S. ’96, runs the startup awesomize.me, a social media portal that helps both users and corporations manage their brand and reputation by leveraging the power of community.
Ms. Shams said he wanted to participate in the expo to offer students employment opportunities in a “bleak” economy and job market—though he said that can be a great time to start a business.
“There has been a major shortage of entrepreneurs in our nation’s capital and in other parts of the country these past few years,” he said. “We have the nation’s highest concentration of advanced and post-graduate degrees—meaning there are more entrepreneurs in D.C. with advanced degrees than in Silicon Valley.”
Students will make great startup employees, he said, in part because they will have “little responsibility or financial burden, so they can afford to forgo a big paycheck for a little while by joining my startup.”
Startups are a valuable employment opportunity for students because they will be able to make a difference “right away,” said Mr. Chung.
“You won’t just be making copies or getting coffee doing an internship or job at a startup,” he said. “Startup internships expose you to the real action and decision-making. You learn more and get more responsibility faster in a startup — you don’t have to put in 20 years to make vice president.”
Click here to RSVP.