Annual career fair draws job hopefuls, protesters
September 26, 2008 3:59 PM
The annual SF State fall career fair attracted many students looking for employment, and although protesters rallied in opposition to some of the recruiters in attendance, they did not dampen the otherwise festive occasion, said Jack Brewer, career center director.
At the job fair, held on Friday between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., students were able to talk to potential employers comfortably even though several protesters were upset that the Marines, the FBI and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security were able to set up booths.
Some campus organizations showed up to voice their disapproval of the military recruiting, including Students Against War and Student Worker Action Network.
“This war they are recruiting for is immoral and illegal,” said Michael Regan, an organizer with Student Worker Action Network.
“Marines have no place on university campuses, let alone in San Francisco, where there is a strong anti-war movement,” he said.
While many in opposition of military recruiters gathered outside with banners and picket signs, inside the atmosphere was productive. Even though there were several strong messages of opposition, there were no arrests or serious conflicts with campus authorities, SF State University Police Chief Kirk Gaston said.
“This career fair has been a success,” Brewer said. “The protesters didn’t seem to bother the employers, many didn’t even know there were students protesting.”
Among the non-governmental recruiters were Verizon Wireless, Shift Communications, Gap Inc. and Kraft Foods Inc.
“We haven’t noticed a protest,” said John LeGulauche, regional vice president for Kraft. “There’s been a good group of students coming through that have been meeting our expectations.”
The police did step in and move protestors when they tried to march into a fire exit. Gaston said the police interjection was warranted because protestors were blocking the exits, putting all in attendance of the career fair in danger.
“The protesters were respectful and did not cause a serious disruption,” Gaston said. “They have a message that they want to get across and as long as they don’t break any laws or compromise anyone’s safety, they’re as welcome as anyone else.”
“They have a right to protest and can do what they do,” he added.
Some students were upset that SF State was able to give military recruiters a booth at the job fair.
“This school is about equality and justice,” said Katie Colver, a fourth year psychology student. “To bring in groups that support war and oppression is horrendous.”
Gaston said he was glad there was no major incident at the job fair and didn’t mind that students were able to exercise their right to protest.
“There are students here that want to voice their opinion and that’s fine,” Gaston said. “Recruiters know when they come here there will be protests. It’s to be expected.”
POST A COMMENT
|BACK TO TOP|| |
Copyright © 2008 [X]press | Journalism Department - San Francisco State University