NNSS engineers, UNLV grads recruit next generation at TechConnect 18

TechConnect 18
Rivera (left) and Pereira Avilez (center) speak with students at TechConnect 18.

The Nevada National Security Site (NNSS) reached out to the next generation of employees at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) TechConnect 2018 fair in early March. TechConnect is an annual student/employer networking event that promotes the availability of technology career opportunities.

Mechanical engineers Oscar Pereira Avilez and Ricardo Rivera, two recently hired employees who are also UNLV graduates, joined Principal Project Manager Von Sudderth in representing the NNSS and engaging interested students.

Participating in events like this is extremely important for students, Pereira Avilez said.

“If you don’t know what’s out there being offered, and you don’t get involved in internships, it’s going to be extremely difficult for you to get a job,” he added.

He and Rivera both started off as NNSS interns in 2016 and became full-time employees after graduating from UNLV in December 2017.

“When students find out about the opportunities we provide, they are really excited about the technology and the capabilities we bring to keep the nation safe,” Sudderth said.

TechConnect 18
Pereira Avilez (left) participates in the panel.

At the end of the event, Pereira Avilez was a member of a panel of graduates hired in the tech field who answered questions from interested students about their success so far. He shared his story of how he became a mechanical engineer right after graduating from UNLV, thanks to his NNSS internship, and gave advice to students looking to stand out in the industry.

“Beef up your resume. Highlight your accomplishments,” he said.

Pereira Avilez recognizes the need to hire employees capable of carrying on the work when others retire.

“We need to make sure we have people who are following in their footsteps – and not only just learning, but learning under them, so they can get that information, that experience and that wisdom, to pass it down,” he said.

As for Rivera, he also sees a bright future ahead of him at the NNSS.

“It’s very flexible; you can work anywhere,” he said. “You never know – today engineering, tomorrow project management.”

If you’re interested in current job opportunities at the NNSS, please visit our Careers page.