More than 100 exhibitors, students and graduates packed into University Campus Milton Keynes (UCMK) part of the University of Bedfordshire for the MK:Smart Technology Graduate and Employability Fair (24th February).

Focusing on innovative smart city solutions being developed by SMEs, the fair connected students, graduates and businesses to offer job opportunities and work placement opportunities.

Over 70 graduates, students and citizens attended the exhibition which featured exhibitors developing innovative solutions to a variety of real-world issues that affect growing cities such as Milton Keynes.

Employers included, ThingWorx, Community Action MK, Evidence Talks, National Museum of Computing, Big Media House, JUXT, Acuigen, Augmented Vacancies and BI Worldwide. These were complimented by larger employers and support services such as The Army, MetroBank, University of Bedfordshire Careers and Employability service and the University of Bedfordshire Research Graduate School.

All of the exhibitors were able to discuss work opportunities and placements available within their businesses with students and graduates.

A number of other activities also took place on the day including:

An engaging presentation on the Lutz Driverless Cars projects, attended by more than 45 delegates, which provided an insight into the driverless cars which will shortly be trialled in Milton Keynes. The presentation included a lively question and answer session around the developing smart city project.
A STEM school taster day, attended by year 12 students from Lord Grey School, Bletchley. As part of the session the students were able to take part in an interactive session on the IT industry by the National Museum of Computing and gain an insight into big data and the Urban Data School from the Open University.
Students were also able to showcase smart city technologies they are developing to businesses exhibiting at the fair, gaining valuable feedback and insights from those working in the technology industry.

Commenting on the fair, Rajinder Sharma, Commercial Manager at the University for the MK:Smart project said: “A great legacy of the MK:Smart project is to be an impetus to the growth of skilled jobs within the fast growing Digital Economy in Milton Keynes. This was a truly unique occasion where graduates had an opportunity to seek employment or work experience with start-ups.”

He further added “This was the first graduate fair at UCMK and I am optimistic that we have created precedence for further ones to take place here.”