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COLLEGE CAREER FAIR: PREP GUIDE

(Posted by Admin)

It’s that time of year again. College seniors are wrapping up their classes, and starting to prepare their resumes for employment after college. One GREAT way to find a job as a recent college graduate is to attend your universities career fairs. However, it is not enough to just show up, you have to be prepared. As a fortune cookie once said, “Planning is the prelude to successful action.” Use this guide to help prepare yourself for that upcoming college career fair!!

This is not a rehearsal. This is your first impression. 
Don't go in to the Career Fair thinking this is going to be "good practice" for interviews. This is the first step to getting an interview. Don't be timid, and put yourself out there. Companies want to see that you have personality and are excited about opportunities at their company (more on that later). You're there to be evaluated for future employment, make it count.

Do your homework!

Coming prepared goes a long way. It's the little things that make all of the difference. Take a few minutes to put personalized company names on resumes, and take a few notes about the company. When I went to career fairs, I had a list of companies I wanted to talk to, and a few notes about their culture, open positions, and questions. Most career fairs have an online list of attending companies, so it is easy to check them out. The internet is your friend here.

Don't be a "Browser"…!

This is your 1 minute elevator interview. It's a waste of your time to stand there, take the company brochure, and let them do all the talking. Introduce yourself, and let them know why you are a good fit for their company (do your homework!). They are there because they have open positions. Be personable, be confident, and most of all be genuine. They don't have to hire you, make them want to.

Practice, practice, practice.

Everyone knows the old "practice your speech in the mirror", well it works. Know what you are going to say before you say it. This way, you'll sound much more confident and natural when talking to companies. Take a few generic resumes and practice with a couple companies you aren't very interested in at first, just to get your lines down, and the jitters out.

Dress for the job you want.

Formal business attire (women, business professional, men, suit and tie). There really isn't a whole lot of wiggle room for this. Bring a few mints (or breath spray) and tissues for sweaty palms. The room will be hot and crowded. Be prepared.

BE OPEN MINDED

Don't just talk to companies that fit what you think you want to do. Jobs can be hard to come by. Certain studies even show 50% of college grads are underemployed. I never realized I wanted to be a recruiter until I did research about a few companies at a career fair I was attending. I never even knew recruiting was a viable career option, and now I'm loving it. Be open to learning new things and trying something outside of your comfort zone. It's worth it.

Good luck!