Land That Job: 6 Career Fair Tips for Students
By Makayla Gatson, Bri Hohol, Jamie San Pedro and Alicia Spitzer
Want to conquer that career fair? Here are 6 tips that are sure to help.
- Do your research.
You’re probably wondering if companies are looking for interns, part-timers, or full-timers. Be sure to look up the list of companies the night before and see what industry they’re a part of and who they’re looking to hire! That way, when you walk up to their booth, you know exactly what they’re looking for and you can use the conversation and the knowledge you gained to your advantage! Make a list of all the companies you want to chat with and write those down. When the day of the career fair comes around, you won’t be as stressed or nervous since you already did your research!
- Prepare, prepare, prepare!
I’ve been told that the key to success is preparation. So why not prepare that elevator speech of yours? Look yourself in the eyes in the mirror when practicing your 30-second “me.” Grab a friend and practice your handshake! It’s always better to be over prepared than under. Don’t forget to print a resume, or two… or fifteen! Make sure you bring a simple padfolio to keep them in. Remember to be direct when introducing yourself, explain what your career interests are, and maintain eye contact. Oh, and don’t forget to bring a pen … you never know when you need to jot something interesting down!
- Dress to impress.
Set aside your career fair outfit the night before. You want to walk into that room with no doubts about your choice of clothing. Dress as if you were attending an interview! Appropriate business attire means nothing too short or revealing, and no cargo shorts for you men out there. There is no such thing as being too overdressed when it comes to professional events.
- Be enthusiastic!
You, yourself know what you want to achieve. Be confident and interested in the companies you interact with. Ask questions about the positions, that individual’s tenure, or what attracted them to the company in the first place. You would be surprised to hear what keeps someone there for so long! And who knows, you could end up loving that company’s culture too.
- After the career fair … follow up!
Set a reminder for yourself to follow up with those you connected with at the career fair. It’s a kind, important gesture to thank them for their attendance and how it was a pleasure to meet them. This way, you are able to see what the next steps are within the interview process and if you have any questions you weren’t able to ask at the career fair. This step goes a long way, so don’t forget to do this!
- Sign up for the career fair ahead of time!
Last, but not least is to sign up for the career fair! All it takes is less than 2 minutes of your time. Click me!