For many Cincinnati jobseekers, finding a coveted position at one of the many growing startups here could begin with a simple trip across the river.
On Feb. 9, Covington-based UpTech
will host an event that everyone at the accelerator hesitates to call a "career fair." Instead it's dubbed UpLink, which will attempt to bring together enthusiastic job seekers and the startups that desperately need them.
From 4-7 p.m., attendees will snack on appetizers and wander from booth to booth, checking out what each startup has to offer. Most of the companies are seeking freshly graduated developers, tech specialists or marketing gurus; all of them are looking for creativity.
"We want the doers and the innovators," says Abby Ober, Program Associate at UpTech who's organizing the event with Alyssa Jones. "We want the kids who take initiative."
The list of startups in attendance in still growing, and UpLink will likely accept company applications until the day of the event. Though several UpTech startups have signed up — Tixers
— UpLink hopes to recruit companies from accelerators across the area. Specifically, they're looking for companies in their first five years of existence with a need for paid help.
As for the startups themselves, leaders are looking for the kind of people who are moldable, willing to learn and ready for a slew of different responsibilities.
"If you can't take punches, then this isn't for you," says Alex Burkhart of Tixers. "You have to have an appetite for risk."
Candice Peters of Seesaw is looking for a similar type of candidate. "We want someone outgoing, a jack-of-all-trades who is able to switch gears every 10 minutes," she says.
Since the event takes place on a Monday, UpLink organizers say they're catering specifically to students in the Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky area.
The event promises a casual atmosphere that reflects the startup vibe. That said, students and other jobseekers should dress for an interview. There will be a photographer in attendance offering free LinkedIn headshots.
All available jobs are paid but not necessarily full time. Most positions are hourly without benefits, though that's not always the case. Many startup associates, like Ober and Jones, have other jobs on the side. That said, the experience at a small, growing company is invaluable.
"Startup culture is awesome," Jones says. "There's really nothing else like it."
UpLink is located at 112 W. Pike St. in Covington.