How to be Successful at a Career/Job Fair


For students who are preparing to enter the job market, career and job fairs are great opportunity to meet with several prospective employers and get a first hand information about them. It is also, very importantly, a wonderful chance to sell themselves to the potential employer and get called up for further screening or interview when there is/are openings to be filled.

However, if you are going to be successful at a job fair, there are certain things you must do.


If your desire is to get back home from a career and job fair with a feeling of accomplishment, then it is necessary that you make adequate preparations before setting out for the event. How well you prepare for this all important event in your life as far as your nailing a job and making a career is concerned, is very crucial to being successful at the fair.

The first thing in your preparation process is to define your objective, that is, your purpose; what you wish to gain from the fair. Are you attending the event to find out all you need to know about the career path for your course of study in certain industries? Or maybe you want to know if opportunities are available for internship or part-time job.

Write down your objective and make a list of the employers you would like to see, beginning with the most important ones to the least important. Since it might not be possible to visit all the employers at the fair, this will enable you get the information you are deeply interested about before you run out of time.

The next thing on your preparation process is to research about the employers you would be visiting. People generally love being turned the focus on, and the employers at the fair are not different. You will strike them more and make them open up to you more if they understand you know some things about them, such as their products and services, community support program, staff training and development program, etc. Hitting them this way is a big sell for you, which could put your name on their list for invitation to a job vacancy. You can easily research an employer on their website.

Another item on your preparation process to ensure your success at the career and job fair is to write out the questions you will be asking the employers. Having a list of prepared questions does not only make you focus on your objective and get relevant answers, it helps you to avoid asking irrelevant questions that could make you look less intelligent and unprofessional. You might want to ask them:

the type of job they have for university and college graduates like yourself; if they have opportunities for co-op, internship or summer job for someone in your area of study; how they normally advertise their vacant positions; their requirements and criteria for assessing candidates for their jobs; their working culture; for their advice for a graduate preparing to enter a career in their employment; their training program for staff; their requirements for entering position; the kind of academic program that will be most beneficial in getting into your desired field; and if there are any extracurricular activities that would be beneficial to being considered for a job opening, etc.

Just as you get your questions prepared, you should be ready for questions from the employers you would be meeting at the career and job fair. Know that the fair equally provides them opportunity to meet with potential employees they could consider to fill a job opening. They would be interested in students who know what they want, and to find that out in you, they could ask you to tell them about yourself, your chosen career path and why you have decided to follow such path.

The employers could also want to know about:

your preparation for the fair; your plans to be able to achieve your goals or objective for coming to the job fair; what you know about their organization; your career goals; the ways you would be useful to them if you are offered employment with them, etc.

In addition to taking some copies of a well written resume along, if you are thorough and take your preparation for a fair seriously, you would definitely be highly successful at the next career and job fair you are be attending.