Thousands of students pushed through the doors of Pettigrew Green Arena for the Hawke's Bay Careers Expo today.
Emma Passey, the liaison and marketing manager for Eastern Institute of Technology (EIT), said organisers expected 2500 senior students from several schools across the region and about 1000 members of the public for the two-day event.
With exhibitors including workplaces such as the Hawke's Bay District Health Board, industry training providers, all New Zealand universities and branches of the Defence Force, students had plenty of career options to choose from.
The day at the arena in Taradale, near Napier, was filled with activity, music, and of course expert advice to guide restless students into their future.
Several exhibitors said they were thrilled with the atmosphere and it was wonderful to see so many students filled with passion, drive and curiosity.
One exciting addition to the careers expo this year is Crimson Education, a New Zealand-founded consultancy for overseas study.
Marketing manager Anna Howard said it was her first time at the expo and the atmosphere was incredible.
"We've had a number of kids come through who are very driven, passionate and very entrepreneurial," she said.
"We're often given the perception that kids these days are handed everything on a plate, but we didn't see this at all.
"Kids are now realising that they have to work hard to achieve what they want and they're prepared to ask the hard questions."
Hawke's Bay police also attended the expo and Sergeant Philip Rowden said they had plenty of interest from students.
"We've had a number of female and male students approach us, asking about the requirements involved, the recruitment process and some have even asked us how it affects family life, so we've had really good team on board to help answer those questions."
Rowden also agreed that several students who passed through the expo were thinking about the future and were prepared to ask in-depth questions to make sure they were going down the right career path.
Jenny Pearce, from the Citizen's Advice Bureau, said she was thrilled with the number of students who approached her team.
"Not many students know what the CAB do and how we can help, so it was really was wonderful to offer students an insight into how we can help."
She said many students didn't realise the service is free and members can offer plenty of advice from housing and environment, to employment and business.
"It looked like the students were really enjoying themselves, it was great to see so many smiling faces and to see them asking so many questions," she said.
The careers expo will conclude tomorrow.