First off, the title of this blog is not a grammatical error, but a reference to one of the most ridiculous, yet funny movies, Borat (hopefully you get it).
At first glance, you might think that I am crazy for looking forward to something like a career fair, but there are multiple reasons why not only is it very important to go (yes I am still talking to you freshmen), but why it can be fun.
Let’s get all of the business stuff out of the way first. It is, in my book, required to be in a suit and tie. You want to look presentable and professional, plus, it feels good to look good and it will build your confidence when speaking to representatives. Always have multiple copies of your resumes, and come with a couple questions that you want to ask. Interest in specific aspects or opportunities within companies always shows passion and interest that recruiters like to see.
Now that some of the groundwork is out of the way, it is time to understand why it is very important to always attend career fairs. For starters, you do not always know what recruiters are looking for. Do not sell yourself short thinking that you definitely won’t get an offer. What if a company is looking for a freshman to build on from the start? You can get a job when not expecting it. However, even if you do not get what you are looking for, talking to recruiters is crucial to your future. Personally, as a freshman, I always attended career fairs and other similar events and talked with people at Boeing. My first event that I attended an event this semester as a sophomore, I was recognized by their head USC recruiter and another executive. That shows that people within the company are taking notice of my passion and dedication for Boeing. There is no better feeling than walking into a networking event as a sophomore and being recognized.
In addition, every time you talk to a recruiter you learn something: what your elevator pitch is, what you wish you did/did not say, key words to say, and personal anecdotes that are worth sharing. By going to career fairs early and often, you are given the chance to practice and perfect your spiel. By the time that the job search is really heating up in junior year, you will have already had plenty of trial runs and be ready to roll.
Finally, the reason it is really fun is… you get to brag about yourself nonstop. You are selling yourself to these companies and get to tell them why you are awesome. That does two things. One, makes you realize how much you have accomplished. Two, it makes you realize what you want to accomplish and how you can complete yourself.
Best of luck!