Our top four career fair tips

By Colleen Sabatino, The Intern Coach

Career fairs are sprouting up on campuses all year round, not just at the end of the year.  In fact, the fall is high season for internship and career events.  At these events, you can network with company reps for either internship or job opportunities. Here are our top 4 tips on how to make the most of your next career fair.

  1. Make sure your resume is up to date with all your latest achievements, including part-time jobs, volunteer work, internships, academic honors, study abroad semesters, unusual hobbies, etc. Your career center will help you update your resume to showcase your skills. Then, print out your resume on good quality paper and take them with you to the career fair.  Present your resume at each company that interests you.
  2. Research what companies will be attending , so you can Google them in advance and find out about the company. Then, you’ll be able to carry on an intelligent conversation and ask relevant questions, showing the representative that you cared enough to research the firm. After you do your research, you may be able to find out if you know anyone who works there who could help you connect with the proper personnel and whose name you could mention to the representative at the career fair.
  3. Review your wardrobe to be sure that you’ll make a professional impression on the companies at the career fair. A clean white shirt or blouse and a neutral skirt or slacks will be a safe combination. Keep your hairstyle and jewelry simple and refrain from using scents. You want the company to see that you would “fit” in at its office, whether as an intern or new employee.
  4. Get there when it first starts. You’ll have a better chance of being remembered if you talk to the companies when everyone is fresh and the fair isn’t crowded. Plan ahead on what you’ll say when you approach each booth. Try to ask a question based on your research. After you engage a representative in conversation, you might even ask if you could do an informational internship interview with the company.