Career Event Preparation
We encourage you to prepare for Careerfest by following the things to do below. And follow the steps on our One Month to Careerfest Success guide to make sure you are ready to land that job or internship
Getting ready for the Virtual Career Fair or employer event? Check out these resources:
- How to register for a fair
- How to sign up for sessions with an employer
- Tips for engaging with employers
- Top 5 ways to stand out with employers
Additional Handshake Resources:
Get your resume prepped and ready for the Career Fairs! Our comprehensive resume guide provides an introduction to resume writing as well as examples of different resumes.
- Or watch the resume webinars below
Looking for a way to set yourself apart from other students? Utilize the tool, Standout to learn helpful tricks to make a lasting impression and practice your answers to some employer questions. Once you feel confident, attend the employer panels prior to the fair to show your face and practice your professional speaking skills.
Our comprehensive Interview Guide offers tips and sample questions to help you become ready to master your interviews!
Make sure you are prepared to introduce yourself to the employers you plan to speak with by preparing your professional self-introduction (aka your elevator pitch). Elevator pitch brainstorm:
- Class (senior, junior, etc.) and major:
- Opportunities you are seeking or excited about
- What are some relevant experiences (class, work, internship, project, volunteer) that you can share?
- Quick overview of a few key skills/strengths - what is the value you bring?
- Do you have knowledge of the company/industry, if appropriate? (ie - “I read that you released a new product” or “how have the teaching strikes affected your district” or “I love XYZ’s innovative approach to social media marketing....” )
- Close (question, it was great connecting with you, etc.)
- Tip: you can also combine this with the last question - ie: “Could you tell me more about the rotational leadership program you offer at company XYZ?”
Hi! I’m Charlie. I’m a sophomore here at Sonoma - I haven’t declared a major just yet, but I’m considering Sociology. I’m attending the career fair to connect and learn more about non-profit organizations in the community. I am involved in JUMP, which is our student service and volunteer organization here, and what got me excited about community engagement. I am excited to bring my collaboration and communication skills to an internship next summer. Can you tell me more about the internship program at XYZ company?
- Oprah Winfrey
- Junior, Communications major
- Recently completed project with local TV station
- Work at the Star (SSU student newspaper)
- Interested in an internship at ABC 7
- Value mentorship focus within an internship
Prepare questions to ask employers Always have at least 2 questions prepared and use this time to your advantage!
- How would you describe the culture of the organization?
- What is the office environment like? Is it formal or more casual?
- How does leadership promote diversity and inclusion within the organization?
- What does success look like in this role? On this team?
- How would you describe this team? The manager?
- What are the opportunities for growth in this role? On this team?
- What do you like most about working for [employer]?
- What other teams do you work closely with?
- What’s the best part of your job? What is the most challenging part?
First impressions can be key! Professional or business, attire is recommended, which may include slacks with a shirt and tie or a sweater and button-down or a blouse and dress pants or a statement dress. Check out the Career Closet Pop-Up events to get free attire to wear.
Clothes Should Be:
- Solid, dark, or neutral colors
- Light colors can be worn underneath
- Nice pants/slacks
- Tailored, in good condition, and wrinkle and lint-free
- Closed-toe heel or dress shoes
Clothes Should Not Include:
- Bright prints/colors
In-Person Career Fair Tips
Tip #1: Print out a few copies of your resume to hand to employers.
Tip #2: Pick out a business casual outfit.
Tip #3: Be sure to complete your Health and Wellness check before attending.
Virtual Career Fair Tips
Tip #1: Double-check your technology! Be sure that your microphone, camera, and Zoom are ready to go, beforehand.
Tip #2: Find a quiet space with a simple background for the virtual career fair.
Tip #3: Pick out a professional top to wear on the Zoom call.
Additional Tips from Handshake:
- Reflect > assess > prioritize
- Follow up + thank you’s
- Gratitude + closing the loop + call to action - key
- Email, Handshake, Linkedin, (re)sending resume if appropriate