By MSBAPM Career Advisor: Katherine Duncan
By now you have probably heard that our School of Business Career Fair is coming up on October 23rd in Hartford. It will be a great opportunity for you to learn about companies and industries you are interested in, and to practice networking. This newsletter article will help you prepare for the career fair BEFORE you attend. Next month’s article will focus on what to do DURING the fair, and in the following month it will describe how to follow up AFTER the career fair.
Here are some things to do before the Career Fair. Make sure you have your polished resume in a folder or portfolio so it doesn’t get bent or folded. You may also want to have business cards made so that you can hand out your contact details quickly, but this is optional. You will want to be dressed appropriately in business attire to make a strong first impression. Make sure to leave any backpacks or duffel bags at home, but a nice briefcase or purse is fine.
A very important part of preparing for the Career Fair is to do your research and know which companies will be attending. More importantly, which do you want to speak to or learn more about? There might not be ample time for you to meet with every single company that interests you, so have a list of “A” and “B” companies to prioritize. Have your pitch perfected (20 to 30 seconds) so that as you meet those new company reps you’ll be able to tell them more about you! Take it one step further by preparing questions for those company reps, you’ll come across as thoughtful and proactive! A good rule of thumb is to avoid any questions that you could easily have found the answers to by doing your own research.
If you are someone who might get nervous in this setting then practice, practice, practice!