What is the Expo?

The annual NW Youth Careers Expo is the Northwest’s premier career-education event, attended by about 6,500 students and more than 100 employers and organizations. The Expo is designed to show students the amazing diversity of career opportunities in our region, as well as the skills and education needed to pursue those jobs.

What do students do at the Expo?

Students can talk with employers and participate in workplace simulations. They also can sign up for mock interviews, which helps them sharpen their job-readiness skills, clarify their educational goals and practice effective communication. Workshops on resume writing and interviewing are also available.

What is the PWA Breakfast?

We kick off the Expo by celebrating the work of our partners over the year and highlighting trends in school-to-workplace connections. Attendees can meet students who were inspired by our career-related learning experiences, and they can connect with educators, business leaders and government officials all invested in raising our graduation rates and creating an educated, prosperous and resilient workforce. Learn more and register.

Who participates in the Expo?

The Expo attracts about 6,500 students from 75+ high schools. About half are from Portland, and the rest travel in from as far away as Hermiston. More than 190 exhibitors and many of Oregon’s best companies participate, representing sectors including health care, business, communications, technology, manufacturing, construction, design, energy, education and government.

More than 100 volunteers organized by the Portland HR Management Association and Portland Workforce Alliance conduct about 1,750 mock interviews to help students sharpen their interviewing skills.

How is the Expo funded, and where does the money go?

Hosting the Expo costs well over $100,000 a year, including renting the venue, providing bus transportation and paying for substitute teachers. Funding from sponsors and exhibitors is used to cover the Expo’s costs and to support community-based career learning year-round through the nonprofit Portland Workforce Alliance.

How did the Expo get started?

The Portland Workforce Alliance organized its first Expo in 2005. Read more about PWA’s history.

How does the Expo support Oregon’s career-learning requirements?

The state of Oregon requires high schools to prepare students for college and career. The Expo supports that goal by offering a rich career-related learning experience, including workplace simulations, mock interviews and many other opportunities for students to deepen their career exploration.

Still have questions? Contact us.