If you are on the market for a full-time, part-time, or experiential learning opportunity then you will want to check out the Summer Career Fair coming up THIS Wednesday, June 24th. It will be held in the HUB south ballroom from 2:00-6:00 PM. Make the most of this event by doing some preparation in advance:
Research Employers. You don’t want to be the person that asks “So, what does your company do?” Take some time to review the companies that will be attending this event. Make a list of your top 5-10 employers and do some preliminary research so that you understand some basic information about the company including what they do and the types of positions they are hiring for.
Bring Resumes. Bring enough resumes to give out to each employer you visit as well as a few extra. Some companies will have just one representative while others may have 2-3 that want to simultaneously view your resume. Carry your resumes in a notebook, folder, or something else professional looking that will keep it from wrinkling.
Dress Professionally. Business professional or business casual are both acceptable. Think about what you would wear to an interview but also keep in mind what will be comfortable. It can get very packed and hot in the HUB, so you may want to think twice about wearing a jacket or sweater.
Engage in Conversation. This is the perfect time for your elevator pitch. Some things you may want to include in this introduction may be your name, major/program, year in school, and 2-3 strengths or interests. Continuing a conversation can be a work of art– have some questions prepared in advance. At the end of the conversation, ask if they have a business card. If you get one, make sure to send them a follow up thank you within the next day.
HIGHLIGHTED STUDENT JOBS AND INTERNSHIPS
For more jobs & internships please visit iCareers and Huskyjobs
Now that you’ve made some great connections at the Employer Connections Fair, don’t forget to follow-up with them. If you had a promising conversation with a recruiter or are really interested in a specific job, send them a concise thank you note. The note should reference parts of your conversation, be free of errors, restate your qualifications for the positon, and your interest in an interview. Follow-up messages should be sent within 24 hours of the fair.
If the employer requested that you send supplemental materials, send those along with the note. Some employers may ask you to apply for a job online. If so, make sure you submit that application within 24 hours and follow up with the employer to let them know you have done so.
After you’ve done your research on the employers, create a list of questions to ask. Some general ones you might consider are:
- What particular skills/qualifications does (organization’s name) look for in prospective employees/interns?
- What is your organizations hiring process?
- What has been your experience at (organization’s name)?
Show that you’ve done your research and ask questions about what you’ve learned
- I read about xyz on your website. Can you tell me more about that initiative?
Do NOT ask questions that can be easily answered by looking at the employer’s website. Also, don’t ask questions about salary and benefits. A career fair is not an appropriate place for those questions.
One of the worst things you can do is ask a recruiter “What does your company do?” You’ve just wasted your time and probably lost the recruiter’s interest. Before you go to the fair, research the employers that will be there. If you are knowledgeable about the company, you can have a deeper conversation with the recruiter AND impress them with your interest the research you’ve done.
The iSchool is sponsoring an Employer Research Session, February 2, 4-6 pm, MGH 066. Bring your laptops and enjoy some pizza while you search for information on the employers attending the career fair.
A list of the employers scheduled to be at fair can be found here.
After a fair, some companies have their recruiters complete a simple evaluation sheet on the candidates they meet. These sheets can include most of the following:
Personal Appearance: dress like you are a serious candidate and they’ll treat you like you are a serious candidate.
Professionalism: Come prepared, be able to communicate your skills clearly and concisely, and be knowledgeable about the employer and what they do.
Confidence: We know you’re nervous. The trick is to appear like you are not.
Leadership: Be ready to highlight your leadership experience whether in a job, club or volunteer setting.
Etiquette: Be sure to use your best interpersonal skills.
(Adapted from: usnews.com/education/blogs/hired-before-graduation/2012/01/17/3-tips-for-students-to-ace-job-fairs )
In addition to your attire, don’t forget a strong handshake and good eye contact. Carry a simple padfolio with copies of your resume and a pad of paper for taking notes. Be considerate of the employers’ time and mind your manners and mannerisms. Address the recruiter as Mr. or Ms. unless they ask you to do otherwise or only introduce themselves with their first name only. This is your opportunity to be evaluated on more than your resume. Make sure you leave a positive impression.
Seattle’s professional style is pretty laid back, but you should still dress the part. Business casual (no jeans and t-shirts) is the recommended dress for the fair. If you want to up your game, come in a suit. In many cases, you may be better dressed then the recruiter—that’s fine. Remember, you’re there to impress.