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Getting the Most Out of a Career Fair

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Why would I want to go to a Job Fair? At a job fair you can:

• Get to know employers • Learn more about their

needs • Set up job interviews

• Secure internships

& Co-op jobs • Clarify career goals

• Make appointments to job shadow

• Learn about career options

How do I prepare? • Click on the Events link at • List and rank the companies that interest

you. • Research their websites/jobs.

• Send an introductory email letting them know that you are attending

the fair and will stop by the booth to talk about their opportunities.

• Write/rewrite your resume to fit the positions.

Develop a Power Greeting – a 30 second commercial to introduce yourself. It should cover: • Your education and credentials. • Your paid or unpaid experience in the field (unless you don’t have any). • Your relevant strengths – what you do best. • What you could do to help them meet their needs (value added).

• Develop 4 or 5 open-ended questions that probe into their needs, problems and challenges. • Decide what you should wear – dress conservatively based on what others wear who work in that organization. • Make copies of your resume to hand to employers.

Probing Questions • What positions are you trying to fill? • What are you looking for in the individuals you hope to hire? • What has caused these positions to come available?

• What needs, problems and challenges will be addressed by the individuals you hire? • What problems will be solved by taking on additional personnel? • What goals have you set for the next five years?

On Job Fair Day • Print your name and major on a name tag. • Obtain a map to employer locations. • Prioritize employers and map your route. • Give your Power Greeting to make a strong

first impression.

When you talk with recruiters • Ask your prepared probing questions. • Ask about employment or internship opportunities. • Ask to be placed on their interview schedule

(if they have one).

• Obtain a copy of their business card.

TIPS - Body Language • Maintain a positive attitude. • Smile pleasantly and frequently. • Shake hands firmly.

• Maintain good eye contact. • Do not be egotistical, arrogant or pushy. • If you catch a recruiter’s eye - make contact. Someone is always watching.

TIPS – Successful Behaviors • Be considerate of others. • Network alone. Avoid “group networking.” • Be purposeful. Make each employer feel like you came here just to meet with them. • Do not act like you are “shopping.”

A Few More Tips for the Job Seeker • Ask for their advice and assistance. • Ask to be remembered when opportunities come available. • If they don’t have an opening in your area, ask for a referral to someone who might.

After the fair: • Send a “Thank You” note to each employer who interviewed you for a position. • Call each employer to ask about the next step in the hiring process. • Once you are employed, complete the “Took a Job” form on our website to help us track placement success.

Life is not the way it’s supposed to be. It’s the way it is. The way you deal with it is what makes the difference.

- Virginia Satir

Getting the Most Out of a Cair Fair (August 2010)