‘Finalist Day’ events match young talent with Indy companies

Close to 300 top-performing college students were in Indianapolis on Friday interviewing for coveted summer internships and two-year fellowships with 90 area companies. TechPoint’s Xtern and Indy Tech Fellowship Finalist Day events were happening at the Biltwell Event Center downtown while the Orr Fellowship Finalist Day was held at the Willows on Westfield on the City’s Northside.

Xtern, the largest of the three talent pipeline programs, received 1,300 applications that were narrowed to just 150 students who participated in the event on Friday. These students represent the best computer science and other tech-skilled students from universities across Indiana and from a number of out-of-state schools. The Xtern program is touted as “The Ultimate Tech Internship Experience,” which is a 10-week summer internship that includes housing, professional networking, skills development and community engagement.

Indy Tech Fellowship, the newest of the three programs, is a two-year full-time position for new grads with leading tech companies where they can hone their skills, fast-track their careers, and impact our community. Twenty-one fellows are participating in the 2016 inaugural class and TechPoint expects the Class of 2017 to have 30 fellows.

The Orr Fellowship, which is independent from TechPoint’s initiatives, is the longest running program of its kind in the state with 75 new grads interviewing for full-time jobs with nearly 40 companies. Orr Fellows are hired for two-year committments in a variety of roles, such as makers, marketers and managers. In addition, Fellows participate in programming that encourages introspection, skill development, business acumen, philanthropic participation, and entrepreneurial spirit.

All three programs experienced increases in the number of applicants this year with Xtern and Orr Fellowship receiving 1,300 and 1,095 applicants repectively.

In an interview with Inside Indiana Business, TechPoint CEO Mike Langellier explained why these young talent pipeline programs are so important to the future of the tech community and to the state’s overall economy.

“For these next generation jobs, talent is the lifeblood; it’s the most critical ingredient. So what we’re doing is we’re creating a giant pipeline of tremendous talent that we can then inject directly into our community and into companies, everything from large companies like Salesforce, Angie’s List, and Interactive Intelligence, all the way down to startup and scale-up companies that are going to be our future successes as well.”

CLICK TO WATCH VIDEO
Click the image above to WATCH VIDEO from Inside INdiana Business interviewing TechPoint CEO Mike Langellier.

The energy and excitement of the Finalist Day events is palpable and shared by the students and company representatives alike.

“There are several unique things happening all at once on Finalist Day and it adds to the energy and excitement on both sides of the interview table,” said Merillat Flowers, director of college-to-career talent programs for TechPoint. “Having this many brilliant people in one space together for the day — the largest Finalist Day we’ve ever had — with everybody focused on the future and career opportunities helps to paint a picture of Indy’s tech future that’s very bright.”

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Click on the photos above to open the Facebook Finalist Day photo album. See Orr Fellowship photos below.

See what people are saying about Finalist Day events on Twitter:

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“Our 16th Finalist Day was a tremendous success for Orr Fellowship, and even more so for the Indianapolis business community and the companies that participated this year,” said Orr Fellowship recruitment director, Austin Del Priore, a second-year fellow and Butler University graduate. “Gathering so many talented and impactful people at one event, it’s hard not to have a positive outlook on how young people will shape the next chapter in Indianapolis. The excitement was tangible as we came away matching over 40 new Fellows with companies across the city.”

Scenes from the Orr Fellowship Finalist Day:

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Joshua Hall is editor of techpoint.org. He writes about Indiana tech companies, jobs, people & events. @joshua2349