Research companies and schools
Hundreds of employers attend campus-wide and discipline-specific career fairs and events annually. It’s a great way for them to help students learn about their company or organization, recruit talent for open roles, and learn more about what the future workforce values. It’s also a great way for you to learn about the world of work, practice networking, and gather information about employers that interest you. Check out the current list of events.
Attending a career fair can be nerve-racking but that shouldn’t hold you back. Read on to learn what you can do to set yourself up for success.
Equip yourself with information
A great way to set yourself apart from your peers is to initiate informed, interesting conversations with recruiters and company representatives. Rather than asking simple questions like, “what do you do”, put in a little bit of time to research the company or organization you are interested in. As you research, try to find out the following:
- What are this company’s goals and priorities?
- What does this company value or care about?
The more you know about a company, the better equipped you are to demonstrate how you will be a good fit for their culture and can contribute to the achievement of their goals. The CareersOnline job board is here to help you through this process. The employers you plan to meet at an upcoming fair may already have a job posted. If they do, write a cover letter and resume for that job and bring your application materials to the fair.
Identify your questions
Don’t hold off on attending career fairs until you’re ready to look for work. While they’re a great resource to look for part-time, seasonal, and full-time work, they’re also a great place to gather insights about your career options, meet new people, and find inspiration.
Clarifying what you want to achieve by attending a specific career fair can help you make decisions about who to meet, what to ask, and even how to dress.
Have your resume reviewed
Staff at the UBC Career Centre are available to help you learn how to effectively communicate your qualifications, characteristics, skills, and experiences on your resume and in your conversations with employers. Book an appointment with them through CareersOnline.
Practice your pitch
Consider what makes you unique. The key to having a memorable conversation with an employer is a sense of novelty and excitement. Your personality, past experience, values, and hobbies can all be used to help the employer understand what makes you stand out. Don’t underestimate how important it is to connect genuinely. Get comfortable communicating who you are, what you care about, and how you spend your time. Remember, confidence takes preparation and practice.
Build your confidence through the following activities:
- Join a workshop
Find workshops or practice sessions to work on your networking skills.
- Sign up for The UBC Hub of Ten Thousand Coffees (UBC Hub)
Receive one introduction to a new connection per month to practice your networking on the UBC Hub platform.
- Practice having engaging conversations
Successful networking is fun for everyone involved. Be as interested in the other person as you are interested in talking about yourself. Read this article from Muse for more information.
- Learn about informational interviews
This strategy enables you to learn about your career options from those that know the work best, while simultaneously building relationships in your field of interest.