A few years ago as our Spring Internship & Career Fair was approaching I wrote this post about the myths relating to career fairs. For those not inclined to click through the link and read the whole post, the most important points are repeated below.
But if you only take away one thing, make it this: the career fair is your chance to meet real people. Use it.
We live in an increasingly online world and the biggest problem with a modern job search is that everyone steers you to apply online where your resume disappears into a "black hole" of applicants never to be seen again. And, yes, when you attend the fair all the recruiters will tell you to apply online. What they AREN'T telling you is that they are using the career fair to quickly evaluate you on the spot. If you make a good first impression, they will go look you up online and drag you out of the black hole. So use your time wisely, ask good questions that show genuine interest in the company and you will MAKE them pull you out of the online pile.
So, here's your reminder from my earlier post about why the myths are wrong and attending career fairs is CRITICAL:
MYTH 1: I don’t need to go to the fair because no one is hiring anyway.
MYTH 2: The job fair is only for Business majors.
MYTH 3: I don’t need to go to the career fair because all the recruiters just tell me to apply online anyway.
MYTH 4: The career fair is only for people who want to live and work in Connecticut.
The job market is not as bad as it seems! You may have friends and family out of work, you may know recent graduates who are having a hard time finding a job. Just remember this: Everyone is different and YOU only need one job. You don’t need a full economic recovery or for the unemployment rate to drop to 3%. YOU need ONE JOB. Companies ARE hiring for entry-level positions. It is competitive. You will have to be diligent in your search, aggressively network and not sit back and apply online and hope for phone calls. Career Fairs are an excellent opportunity for this.
Don’t miss the chance to NETWORK with the employers face to face! Make a good impression now and they will remember you later! GET ON THEIR RADAR. We have had many students use the relationships they start at a fair to get internships and full-time jobs months, and even years, later.
We expect more than 90 organizations coming who want to talk to YOU! The vast majority of the employers attending are willing to speak with ANY MAJOR. They are hiring for a wide variety of positions.
You NEED to have a resume with you…but they might not take it.These days almost every employer will require you to apply online through their website. There are a number of reasons for this and they have nothing to do with you personally. It doesn’t matter anyway because you are coming to the job fair to make CONNECTIONS with PEOPLE not spam your resume to every employer in the room. HAVING A RESUME ALSO SHOWS THAT YOU ARE PREPARED. Use your resume as an introduction and a conversation starter. If they keep it, great. If they give it back to you and ask you to apply online instead, do so. The important thing is to ENGAGE the recruiterand ask some questions that demonstrate you prepared for them so that when you DO apply online they REMEMBER YOU.
Many of the recruiters attending WILL be from the Connecticut offices of their organization. It makes sense for them to send the closest representative. However, many of the companies attending are NATIONAL and INTERNATIONAL companies with opportunities everywhere. This is your chance to make a PERSONAL CONNECTION with a recruiter and convince them you are a quality candidate worthy of a referral to the recruiter in the location you prefer.
The Fair is from 1:00-3:30pm on Wednesday, February 13th in the Pitt Center.
DON’T MISS IT!
Professional attire is REQUIRED.
(THIS CAREER FAIR IS NOT OPEN TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC. IT IS FOR CURRENT SHU STUDENTS AND ALUMNI ONLY)