By: Kevin Bruns
Public Relations Intern
Career Development and Gloria S. Williams Advisement Center
Why Attend a Job Fair?
Looking for a job can be an extremely stressful experience. Trying to find a place you would like to work, a company that is hiring, and locating positions you are interested in can create more headaches than actual job leads.
Job hunts are a multi-step process and attending a job fair is a great way to expedite this process. Job fairs bring the employers looking to hire to one place and for one reason; to recruit new talent. Typical job fairs have between 25-100 employers and allow all participants an opportunity to speak one-one-one with recruiters. Recruiters at job fairs are often looking to fill multiple positions and will give everyone they speak to an opportunity to present themselves. Think guaranteed first interview!
Attending a job fair can be nerve-racking, but it is an environment that allows participants to shine. It is important to understand the etiquette and tips for succeeding in such an environment. Here is some advice for how to flourish at a job fair:
- Before you arrive at the job fair, research the employers that will be attending. Make sure you know who you are going to be talking to before you get there, and brainstorm questions you would like to ask them.
- Dress for success. Job fairs are essentially interviews, and wearing a business suit is the best way to go. Carrying a portfolio with your resume, reference sheet, pens, and a notepad is a great idea.
- When the time comes to speak with a recruiter, you may only have a minute to make your pitch. Rehearsing what you want to say is the best way to be prepared for this. Your pitch should be a brief introduction of yourself then quickly highlight your skills and experience in relation to the job your are pursuing. Once you finish your pitch give the recruiter your resume and reference sheet, and ask any questions you may have. When your time is up, get the business card of the person you spoke to and thank them for their time.
- Your job is not done when you leave the job fair. It is important to send a follow up email to all the recruiters you spoke to thanking them for their time. Attach your resume to this email and be sure to follow up on anything you need to such as a job application, interview appointment, etc.
Following all these tips will put you on the right track to landing a job through a job fair. Job fairs can be intimidating but be confident, informed, and educated while there and you will succeed!
by: Stephanie Bassanini
Land YOUR Internship
Shortly after ending my junior year in William Paterson University, where I am majoring in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations, the fear of graduation set in. Feeling unprepared for a career that you have been preparing for over the past three years seems ludicrous! I was continuously doing well in my classes but I had to find the time to engage in real world experience, a skill that a textbook could not teach.
At a practicum as I have learned there is a certain hands-on type of work that cannot be experienced in a classroom. The way I have to deliver my ideas are not the same. As student in a classroom I had to brainstorm, put my ideas on paper, and receive a grade on the content, format, and the correct use of “spell-check” in order to receive a grade! But as an intern at the Career Development & Advisement Center (CDAC) my brainstorming had to produce tangible results. My ideas had to work in practice and benefit the office.
Internships! In the communication department that is a word that will never go unheard of. There are internship coordinators like Professor Brown, in charge of the external internships, that help students find suitable internships and then supervise the acquired positions. The communications department also has an internal coordinator, Barry Morganstern, which helps students with on-campus positions. Every department has an internship coordinator which helps students search, acquire an internship, and provide feedback during the semester or summer time. The amount of coordinators available in each department varies.
Internships take place during fall semesters, spring semesters, and during the summer time which students find to be the most competitive. The semesters available depends on the corporation, firm, boutique, etc. There are many ways to place yourself in the running and stand out amongst all the applicants. Have a well prepared, formatted, and proofread resume. All experience can be used as a positive relevant skill. Polish your interview skills as a student visit the CDAC and use its resources! Want to know what you look like to future employers? Get a mock interview. If you need directions on what to do before an interview get a “Guide to interviewing” http://www.wpunj.edu/career-advisement/career-development/job-search-tools/interviewing/interviewing-tips.dot and read it before you step in to the office! Ask questions on an interview, you have not learned everything about them in a 20 minute interview. Ask a career specialist in the CDAC what are some questions you may be appropriate to ask.
With no previous internship experience and the center’s first public relations intern, we had to work together in order for me to increase awareness of the center and of its social media. Thoroughly researching what the center offers I was able to inform other students of how they can benefit from a short visit to the office, event, or workshop. Research and learning increased my confidence as an intern. Prospective interns research the places you apply to, get familiar with what they offer so you can effectively market it or know what they expect of you as intern. There is no universal how-to – get the job guide, but there are so many available ways to increase your likelihood of getting the job, including an internship! Post your resume on http://cms.wpunj.edu/career-advisement/wpjobconnect/index.dot