GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) - Hundreds of college students from Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula participated in a draft at Lambeau Field on Thursday, but it's not the draft you're thinking of. The idea is kind of like the NFL Draft, but instead of receiving jerseys and a contract, the students receive scholarships and a possible paid internship.
A scholarship winner speaks at the podium with Green Bay Packers president and CEO, Mark Murphy by his side
The students had their chance to interview for more than 300 paid internship positions at 60 Northeast Wisconsin Manufacturing Alliance member companies.
"It's amazing the depth and breadth of the internships. We have engineering to supply chain to accounting to HR, so we really have a cross representation of opportunities for the students," said Ann Franz, director of the NEW Manufacturing Alliance.
"It's a great opportunity to meet with a bunch of employers all at once in one location so I don't have to go all over, and also I'm president of a student organization so there's an opportunity to get money for my organization by coming today," said Mikala Gwinn, a double-major in business and psychology at UW-Green Bay.
The draft works by points. The students were able to rack up points before the event based on their level of participation in clubs, any past work experience and their GPA. They received more points during draft day based on how well they interview.
"I think we have had some very strong candidates. I know that we have had candidates that we definitely want to bring back so we've been very pleased with the caliber of students that we've had coming through," said Kathy Koehler, human resources director at EMT International.
Each company will choose their most valuable interview, or "MVI"; that student will get additional points. At the end of the day, the students add up all of their points and then their school will choose the top overall draft pick.
The top overall draft pick for each school received a $1,500 scholarship presented to them by Green Bay Packers president/CEO Mark Murphy.
"Most students have never walked across the stage to be the number one pick of anything let alone a draft, and Mark Murphy really makes this a very special event," Franz says.
"I definitely improved on my interview skills, and I've learned a lot about various companies, which is great," said Gwinn.