Many college students wonder about whether or not they will have a job after they graduate.
Fairfield students will have an opportunity to relieve their worries by presenting themselves to potential employers on Sept. 28 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the semi-annual career fair.
Seventy different companies participated in last year’s career fair, including Ernst & Young, Federal Bureau of Investigation and Travelers Insurance. According to the Manager of Employer Relations and Alumni Career Development Julie Tuozzoli and Director of Career, Leadership and Professional Development Cathleen Borgman, more than 90 companies will be in attendance this year. These companies are listed with links to their websites on OrgSync in the Academic and Career Development Center section.
Even though the Career Fair exists to help students find jobs, it can still be a major source of anxiety as it quickly approaches. For that reason, the Academic & Career Development Center has arranged a series of helpful tips to assist students with any worries that they may have.
“Students should do their research [on the companies] before attending the career fair,” said Tuozzoli. “Students should also have their résumé reviewed in the Academic and Career Development Center and bring many copies with them to the fair.”
Borgman agreed on the importance of doing research before attending the fair.
“Look up who will be attending on OrgSync and identify those companies you know you want to visit,” advised Borgman. “Number them in the order of interest so that you utilize your time in the most effective way. Read up on the company and formulate some questions you can ask the representative. The number one worst thing to do is show up and ask either, ‘What do you do?’ or ‘What can you do for me?’ Recruiters are impressed when people have taken the time to learn a bit about the organization and how perhaps they might be a fit. Even if you aren’t sure, at least know what the company does.”
Tuozzoli advised students to also check if the companies they are interested in have jobs posted on Stags4Hire before going to the Career Fair so that they can see if there is a job listing that they can see themselves applying for.
After preparing beforehand, according to Borgman, students should “put on a suit or professional outfit and come to the RecPlex with your swipe card between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. It is OK to come with friends, but once you arrive my suggestion is to split up and don’t move in a cluster. You want future employers to see you as an individual who is able to function independently.”
Tuozzoli also commented on the importance of professional attire.
“Students should dress for success — professional attire is required,” she said. “Nice dress, suit or skirt/jacket and sensible shoes for women. Suit or jacket and tie for men.”
After the Career Fair, it is important for students to stay in touch with companies that they have spoken to.
“If there was a great connection made, make sure you follow up,” said Tuozzoli. “Ask for their business card and write them a note. Stay in touch too.”
Borgman added, “If you really like a company and feel as though you have made a connection, get a business card. Drop an email or a handwritten note reinforcing how much you enjoyed your conversation and express your interest in the organization.”
If students are still unsure of what to do or whether they should be attending the Career Fair in the first place, Borgman also shed light on this.
“While the emphasis is on juniors and seniors, all students should come and begin developing their networks and elevator pitch,” she commented. “The first time attendees might find it slightly overwhelming, so those who come as sophomores are able to overcome their initial fears and really hit the ground running come junior and senior year. I believe it is never too soon to see what it is about.”
Tuozzoli also commented on the importance of the Career Fair.
“The Career Fair is important for students to begin building their network of career contacts and gain knowledge about different types of companies and career opportunities offered,” said Tuozzoli. “Anyone can come to the Career Fair. It is never too early to learn what employers have to say. There are a variety of companies coming. It is important to note that all majors can probably find something of interest. Many companies are open to speaking with students from all majors.”