CiRCLE Optics Student Expo

Mar 20, 2024 | Company Culture | 0 comments



Circle Optics has innovated its recruitment approach by hosting its first Student Expo at NextCorps, moving beyond its traditional participation in job fairs. This selective event aimed to forge stronger connections with potential talent, inviting 13 co-op hopefuls for an exclusive peek into the company's technology and operations. CEO Zak Niazi and COO Ian Gauger expressed their enthusiasm for the talent in Rochester and the positive impact of local tertiary education on the industry. Students, amazed by the experience, shared positive feedback, highlighting the unique opportunity to engage with the team and learn about real-world applications of their studies. Circle Optics sees this Expo as a step towards retaining talent in Rochester and fostering innovation within the local ecosystem.

Circle Optics has been actively participating in four job fairs annually for the past three years. However, in a fresh twist to our recruitment efforts, we recently hosted our inaugural Student Expo at NextCorps. This event was not just another job fair; it was a carefully crafted experience designed to foster a deeper connection between Circle Optics and the next generation of talent. We extended invitations to an exclusive group of 13 co-op hopefuls, handpicked for their potential and interest in our field, offering them a unique opportunity to visit our office, meet our dynamic team, and get a sneak peek at our technology—a reveal so exclusive that even our Director of Marketing, Jennifer Sertl, has not shared publicly.

Our Founder and CEO, Zak Niazi, shared his enthusiasm about the event, stating, “It was a pleasure to host a bunch of bright minds from the University of Rochester and RIT tonight, in a fun and informal setting. Rochester is brimming with amazing talent that is gearing up for the industry.” Echoing this sentiment, COO Ian Gauger highlighted the invaluable role tertiary schools play in the region, describing them as “a real boon to the region and a primary contributor to the innovation seen in the area today.”

The Student Expo was more than just a showcase; it was a holistic experience complete with a tour, pizza, and a detailed look at Circle Optics’ groundbreaking technology. Amid these activities, our employees also shared invaluable career advice, passing on wisdom gleaned from their diverse experiences within the industry.

Feedback from the students attending was overwhelmingly positive, underscoring the impact of the event. Gabriella Fatigati, a Photographic Science student at RIT, was pleasantly surprised: “I wasn’t expecting the NextCorps building to be this cool, and I really didn’t know anything about the Circle Optics projects. The Student Expo really surpassed my expectations. The projects are really interesting, and I had no idea about all the industry connections.”

Mechanical Engineering student Declan Bhagwat shared his awe-inspiring experience: “The first thing is, I was lost in the building, which is cool, like finding a historic spot. But when I got to this floor, the environment was breathtaking—huge, open, with all the old architecture. Meeting the team was amazing; everyone was friendly and open, eager to share. I enjoy asking questions, which made it easy to dive into details about what they do. The facilities are top-notch. Seeing the actual camera was a stunning, once-in-a-lifetime experience. Talking to Bob, one of the mechanical engineers, showed how class concepts are applied here. It’s just a really cool experience.”

At Circle Optics, we feel a strong responsibility to retain this burgeoning talent within Rochester. With the six innovative programs at NextCorps, especially the Luminate portfolio, we are confident that there is a career fit for each of these students within our ecosystem. This Student Expo is a continuation of our commitment to nurturing local talent and fostering an environment of innovation and growth in Rochester.

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