How to Prepare for a Career Fair

A career fair enables you to meet personally with recruiters from participating companies. It’s important to know what recruiters are looking for before attending this event.

Career Fair Preparation

  • Review the list of companies attending and research the ones that interest you
  • Update your résumé and have it reviewed (Career Services offers résumé review every day)
  • Practice your elevator speech (your 30-second commercial outlining your career goals and aspirations) 
  • Gather items to take with you: résumé copies, notepad and pen, and research notes on the company
  • Prepare questions to ask employers
  • Wear professional clothing
  • Prepare a strategy of how you will work the career fair; know where the companies you want to talk with are located

Greeting Employers

  • Greet the representative with an enthusiastic smile, a firm hand shake, and good eye contact
  • Introduce yourself, “Hi, my name is ____ and I am interested in opportunities in this field.”
  • Tell the representative your short- and long-term career goals
  • Ask if the company has any open positions
  • Prepare a brief description of your skills and achievements
  • Ask questions about the type of person they are looking for
    • What are the duties and responsibilities?
    • What qualities, skills, and experience does the organization look for?
    • What type of training is offered?
  • Offer a copy of your résumé and ask for a business card
  • Thank the employer for talking with you and shake hands

Career Fair Review 

  • Review the business cards you obtained, along with your notes
  • Send a thank-you letter or email to the person you spoke with     
    • Use proper grammar, spelling, capitalization and punctuation.    
    • Address the person in a proper manner (example: Mr. or Mrs.)    
    • Reference a part of your conversation in the letter or email     
    • Describe your interest in the company
  • Persistence is good, but only in moderation