The Career Fair: Opportunity Awaits

While it is important to go into a job fair with a plan, you should also remember to go with the flow. Many times, you will end up really liking a company that you did not research too heavily prior to the event. Remember that many organizations hire a variety of different majors. Do not limit yourself and look to network as much as possible.

Remember that when you are speaking to recruiters, you are having a conversation. This means that both parties should be asking each other questions and answering. Think of both general and specific questions you can ask employers prior to the event. For example, “what kind of entry-level positions exist within your organization?” and “does your organization hire on a continual basis or just certain times of the year?”

In the end, you should approach each conversation with three goals in mind. First, you want to hand off one of your resumes to the employer. Second, you want to receive a business card in return in order to follow up with the employer. Lastly, you should treat every individual with respect and professionalism. If all three of these things happen, you are executing the fundamentals of a job fair.

Take the next step in your career development. Attend the Career Fair and discover all of the opportunities that your Mount education has gained for you.

If you need more assistance or advice for job fairs, proper attire or resumes, be sure to visit the Career Center. The Career Center staff wants nothing more than to see you succeed and find the perfect job or internship.Patriot Hall will be opportunity central on March 18 from 3pm-5pm. Nearly 40 employers will be in attendance at the Career Center’s annual Career Fair. No matter your class year or major, you are welcome and encouraged to attend and explore what this great event has to offer.

Among the organizations in attendance will be the National Institutes of Health, Frederick Police Department, New York Life Insurance Company, Target Community & Educational Services, the U.S. Department of State and so much more. This event keeps getting bigger each year, and this year will be no exception.

If you decide to take the next step and attend the Career Fair on March 18, it is important that you put your best foot forward. This will begin with your attire.

Men should wear polished shoes with dark socks and a two-piece suit that is navy, dark gray or black. A white long sleeved dress shirt is also appropriate with a simple tie that matches the color of the suit. Women should also plan on wearing a two-piece suit in navy, dark gray or black. Polished shoes with a 1-1 ½” heel are preferred.

To prepare for the event, check out the list of the employers that will be attending. Research all of the companies you plan on speaking with so you can show that you are prepared and interested. For example, the recruiters with Edward Jones will be impressed if you already know that they are a nationwide investment firm and a leader in the financial services industry. Bring 20 copies of your resume on a heavier bond paper in order to have enough to share with employers.

Job fairs are an awkward experience for many students. Having to start a conversation with complete strangers who are professionals in a given field is never easy. To defeat your nervous tendencies, accept your uneasy feelings and move forward with a confident and outgoing attitude.

Being prepared is also a good tactic to defeat these uneasy feelings. Create a brief pilot speech that addresses your qualifications and expresses your interest in the position or company. Once you get past the initial introduction stage, the rest will be easy.

Josh Karlheim

Staff Writer for The Mountain Echo

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