A letter to our students: 4 reasons why you should go to the 2018 Career Fair
By Mandy Plybon, Assistant Director/Internship Coordinator, Center for Career Development
As a student, your life gets consumed with classes, homework, extracurricular activities, and more. You might be experiencing this already. You will notice your free time turns into a luxury and planning for your future tends to fall further down on your “things to do” list. It is important to remember that it is never too early to start thinking about life after graduation. The Center for Career Development sponsors a variety of programs and events that provide you the chance to build professional skills, learn about different career options, and discover your ultimate career path.
One of our main sponsored events is the annual career fair. This year, the fair is Tuesday, September 25 from 10:30 AM – 1:30 PM in the Muller Student Center. You may think you do not need to attend. Maybe you have class? Or maybe as a freshman you think it’s too soon to think about your career? Or perhaps you’d rather rely on online resources to look for an internship, job, or graduate school? While online searches are a great tool, there are advantages to attending a career fair that you cannot get online. Here are just a few:
- Career fairs = networking opportunities. The job market (and graduate school admissions) is competitive. If you begin thinking about your career now, you will create a habit to network with organizations and professionals. Have a good sense of the fields that interests you. Be willing to discuss your talents, skills, experience, and education. As you attend more campus programs and events, as well as other local community networking events, you will start to grow confidence in speaking about yourself as well as a powerful network before you even graduate.
- Discover job and internship openings to build your work experience. Career fairs allow you the chance to touch base with a lot of potential employers and learn about current or potential job/internship openings and other experiential learning opportunities. This is your chance to learn about these opportunities and ask questions about the hiring/application process. Remember, the more experience you have on your resume at graduation, the better you look to a graduate school or employer.
- Develop your interview skills. A career fair is a great way to practice your elevator pitch and build confidence. To-date, there are 40 employers and recruiters ready to meet—YOU! You will have opportunities to practice your handshake, make eye contact, and talk about your strengths. Remember Strengths Quest? You will also practice answering unplanned questions. Pay attention the questions you are asked and work on improving your answers as you move through the fair.
- Learn about different industries. Career fairs are a valuable way to learn about the variety of industries available. Bring a folder or portfolio to keep handouts and other informational materials. Bring a notepad and pen so you can take notes as needed and don’t forget their business card so you can follow up after the event!
If you are questioning whether or not to attend, think about these four advantages. Whether you are a senior looking for your first job after graduation or you are a freshman just exploring opportunities, the career fair is the place to get started. See you there!
To see who is coming to the 2018 Career Fair and to get more information, go to MyWC – Career Services – 2018 Career Fair. You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note, professional dress is recommended and snacks will be provided.