How to Approach Your College Job Event

How to Approach Your College Job Event
  • Opening Intro -

    As you finish up your higher education, your thoughts may increasingly turn toward what you will do next -- such as finding a job.

    Colleges and universities are eager to help you make the transition from the academic to your career, and will often sponsor a college job event to bring employers and students together.

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Read on and we will examine the best approach for you to take as you prepare for and attend a college job fair.

1. Write your resume. You will need to present hard copies of your resume at a job fair, therefore you should develop one that reflects your skills and accomplishments. Take advantage of your college’s career center and related seminars to help you craft a winning resume. With the assistance of your school, you can create a flawless resume and have copies printed up for distribution.

2. Dress to impress. Every student should have an “interview suit” or an assemblage of business attire that demonstrates that they are ready for work. Men should wear a suit, a tie, a dress shirt and dress shoes with matching socks and belt. Women should be similarly attired, wearing a business suit, a blouse and coordinating that look with matching shoes, a belt and a purse, the latter optional. Opt for fine clothes here — what you wear to your interview may be useful later when you are on the job.

3. Register for a job fair. Most college job fairs are open to college seniors and, therefore, you probably do not have to register to attend one. In any case, take note of the date and time of the job fair and plan your schedule accordingly. Most job fairs are held in the evening or on Saturdays and should present no conflict with your class schedule.

4. Review the list of companies present. If you are able to obtain a list of companies that will be at the job fair in advance of the event, then do so. Review that list and take note of those companies that you will approach at the fair. There may be 10, 20 or more employers present — prioritize the tables that you want to visit and work from the most important stations to the least. Time is of the essence here — you may not have all day to visit everyone.

5. Meet with company representatives. Visit each table or station and introduce yourself to the company’s representative. Shake hands, maintain eye contact and be prepared to explain who you are and what you are interested in. It would help to know something about the company in advance, nevertheless be prepared to ask questions about the business, demonstrating interest and enthusiasm.

6. Consider it an interview. Your time with a company representative should be treated as a mini interview. It certainly will not be as formal as an official interview, but company representatives will look at it as a screening session where potential employees are identified and considered for follow up. Keep this in mind as you want to leave a positive impression. Provide copies of your resume when asked; obtain business cards for follow up.

7. Employ a follow-up strategy. With the career event behind you, follow up with the people you met. Write thank you notes and, if there is a company you are interested in, ask for an interview. If you do not hear back from the company, call the person you met at the college fair one week after sending out your thank you notes. Remind this person of who you are and express your interest in the company. Ask for an in-person interview.

Interview Notes

By all means attend your college’s career fair. This event will give you the opportunity to work on your interview skills. It can also connect you with your future employer, perhaps presenting the best chance for you to meet with one or more company representatives.

See AlsoSucceeding With Your Campus Interviews

College Financing reference:

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