How to Stand Out at a Career Fair

How to Stand Out at The Career Fair  

Attending a career fair can be a valuable step in the career exploration and job search process. Employers come to meet students and recruit employees. They can provide information about the job market and career options as well as the availability about current job openings. You have the opportunity to not only look for a job, but gather career information and develop a network of career contacts. Career fairs will benefit you whether you’re a freshman, senior, graduate student or faculty member wanting to keep up with the changing job market.

Stand out from the crowd

  1. Be Prepared

    • Research
      • You should know something about the companies and organizations participating in the Career Fair. Access the websites of registered exhibitors here. (Updated weekly.)
    • Know what you want
      • If you indicate that you’ll take anything, it shows the employer that you lack direction and have not done your research.
    • Dress to impress
      • Dress as if you are going to a job interview. Most employers will consider business casual appropriate for job fairs.
    • Take your supporting documents
      • If you are seeking a job, you should have the following documents with you:
        • Cover Letter
        • Resumé (Have your resumé critiqued ahead of time)
        • Reference Letters
  2. Have a Professional Manner

    • Carry your credentials in a professional way.
      • A neat folder or small briefcase works well.
    • Come early
      • Some employers may have to leave early or may be tired from talking to students all day. It’s best to come early when everyone feels fresh.
    • Greet them with a strong handshake and a positive attitude.
      • First impressions are very important. Greet each employer with a smile and share basic information about yourself and your career interests. Keep it brief. (Prepare your One Minute Commercial ahead of time.)
    • Ask for the next step
      • The employer should be able to tell you the next step in the hiring process. Be sure to pick up business cards from recruiters with whom you speak and jot down notes on the cards.
  3. Follow Up

    • Write thank-you notes
      • Send thank-you notes or emails to every employer you speak to at the career fair.
    • Complete any online application requested
    • Keep a record of every employer/recruiter with whom you speak.
  4. Polish Your One Minute Commercial