College career fairs are a great opportunity for college students to speak with company recruiters and learn about job and internship opportunities. However, they can also be overwhelming and stressful if the student is not prepared. Here are four tips to help the student make the most of the next college career fair:
- Research the companies the student is most interested in speaking with – The quickest way for a student to impress a company recruiter is to come prepared by researching the company beforehand, since most students will not make this effort. This especially impresses recruiters from small and medium-sized companies. The student should spend about 20 minutes researching each company the student plans to speak with, learning about what the company does, what relevant opportunities are available, and checking if there has been any major recent news regarding the company. The student should then come up with a few well-informed questions to ask based on the research.
- Prepare and practice an introduction – The student should prepare a 20-30 second introduction, often called an “elevator pitch,” to introduce themselves to recruiters. The introduction should highlight the student’s qualifications and interests, which will help make a good impression. Here is an example introduction:
I am currently a junior at USC majoring in Business Administration with an emphasis on marketing. In addition to the marketing classes that I have taken at school, I have had experience as a freelance marketer working on marketing campaigns for several clients. Through my work, I have created TikTok, Facebook, Instagram, and Google Ads. I have also used Google and Facebook Analytics to track and measure campaign results. For one client, I increased website traffic by 45% through using TikTok and Google Ads, as well as posting on social media sites such as Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook. I am now looking for a digital marketing internship where I can contribute while also continuing to learn.
- Bring resume copies and be prepared to discuss the resume – The student should bring copies of their resume and be prepared to give a copy to recruiters. Students should place their resumes inside a padfolio to ensure that the resumes do not get damaged or wrinkled. The student should also be ready to talk about any item on the resume in detail. Recruiters may ask about past classes, work experiences, or anything else that is stated on the resume.
- Ask for a business card or other contact information to follow up – If a student has made a good connection with the recruiter, the student should ask the recruiter for their business card so that the student could follow up. The student should then send a thank-you email within 24 hours, thanking the representative for speaking with them and reiterating their interest in possible opportunities within the company.
By following these tips, the student will be better prepared to make a great impression at the next college career fair. The student should remember that the best way to impress potential employers at career fairs is to come prepared. This will increase the chances landing the job or internship the student is looking for.
LA Career Coaching