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Prepare for the Career Fair!

March 14th, 2014 by jconole

You love the idea of approaching strangers, pitching your value (or "selling yourself"), and fostering internship and job opportunities, right? Wrong. Most college students cringe at the thought of networking. Here are some quick tips to help you put your best foot forward for the upcoming Career Fair on March 26th!

  1. Research. Find out who will be at the career fair (you can find the list of attending employers in Hawks Hunt), and do some background checking on the opportunities available at those companies. Remember that employers may have openings that fit your major and your career goals, even if you do not necessarily associate certain companies with your field of interest.
  2. Practice Your Elevator Speech. This is known as your "30-Second Commercial." You are the CEO of Me, Inc., and you have a short amount of time to "sell yourself" (e.g., express your value) to a potential employer. It takes practice to make sure you get it right. Swing by the Career Center for help with your 30-Second Commercial, or, if you have taken the Career Planning Seminar, look in your workbook for ideas on how to get started.
  3. Prepare Your Marketing Package. Take advantage of the assistance of your Career Advisor to prepare an impactful, impressive, and irresistible résumé, and bring several copies in a portfolio to the fair, along with other supporting documents (references, examples of your work, cover letter if appropriate). If you do your research like you should, you can even tailor a few resumes for certain opportunities with certain employers.
  4. Look the Part. Dress professionally and appropriately for your career goals. You will never go wrong with wearing a conservative suit. Remember that you will be doing quite a bit of walking, so wear professional and stylish but comfortable shoes.
  5. Prepare Your Ego. Be ready to be told to apply online. Be aware that you may have to wait to speak to some employers. Be mindful that a negative, bitter, or unhappy attitude will leave a lasting negative impression with the employer. Approach employers with positive energy, ask good questions, and demonstrate an interest in them, and they will remember you for the good reasons.

Need a pep talk or some quick tips before the Career Fair? Visit the Career Center to speak to your Career Advisor!