Posted by Kelsey Johnson and Fernando Ramirez, Career Services Career Assistants

networking_professionalsAs many of you might know the Winter Career Fairs are coming up next Tuesday and Wednesday. Once you know what employers are coming to the fairs, how should you prepare to land the perfect job or internship?

Preparation is one of the most important things you can do to stand out to potential employers.  Researching the companies you are most interested in can help you convey your interest in the employer, as well as increase your confidence. Instead of feeling intimidated by hundreds of employers, you can feel confident approaching them. Something one might do to gain information is go to the employers website and browse around.  Questions to consider while online might be: What are the qualifications for applicants? What is something new and exciting about this company? What is their mission statement, and what are their goals? What kinds of projects are they involved in? Are there any new products? Where is their main office?  Utilizing their website is an easy and efficient way to acquire background knowledge of the organization.  This way when you attend the Career Fair, you aren’t asking employers, “So… what do you do?” Employers actually tell us that this is one of the least impressive and unflattering questions they get.

Another way to ease your nerves while approaching employers is to prepare a 30-second self-advertisement in advance. This 30-second advertisement should not only serve as a way to introduce yourself to the employer, but also illustrate why you would be a good fit for the position. Your 30-second ad should contain your name, major, year in school, opportunities you are seeking, relevant experience, highlight of skills and strength, and some knowledge of the company.  By knowing and practicing this information in advance, you can feel comfortable approaching employers and in turn they will appreciate your preparation. So, remember if you’re hoping to catch a recruiter’s attention at the Career Fair or any other occasion, be prepared. Also, don’t forget to have some fun with it!  Believe us, it pays off! For additional information on preparing for the Career Fair go to the link that follows and click on Career Fair Success Strategies.