Academic Internships Office

Are You Ready?

Below are some tips and tricks to guide you through getting the most out of the Fair experience, from the actual meet and greet to following up afterwards.

Approaching the Recruiter

  • Respect the privacy of others as you approach the table.
  • You are “on stage” at all times, which includes standing in line and moving around the fair area.
  • Make eye contact immediately when introducing yourself.
  • Give a firm handshake to get you off to a good start.
  • SMILE and be polite--show your enthusiasm!
  • Be prepared to ask questions – about the position(s) available, the qualities/skills they look for in a candidate, their selection/hiring process, etc.

What to Wear

Suggestions for Men:

  • Suit - typically a darker color
  • Pressed dress shirt
  • Polished dress shoes, dark socks
  • Portfolio to carry resume
  • Light on the cologne, aftershave
  • Breath mints

Suggestions for Women:

  • Suit - skirt or pants
  • Dress shirt or shell
  • Sensible shoes
  • Skin toned nylons
  • Simple and essential only jewelry
  • Portfolio to carry your resume
  • Light on the Perfume
  • Breath mints

30-Second Sales Pitch

Hand the recruiter a copy of your resume and be prepared to expand on it quickly. Share basic information about yourself and your career interest like this:

  • Name
  • Major/Emphasis
  • Opportunities you are seeking
  • Relevant experience (student teaching, work, internship, volunteer)
  • Highlights of skills and strengths
  • Knowledge of the company

Common Mistakes to Avoid

  • Lack of Focus
  • Lack of Enthusiasm
  • Not Making Eye Contact
  • Grabbing Free Stuff
  • Not Bringing Resumes
  • A Weak Handshake
  • Asking About Salary
  • Not Asking Questions
  • Not Dressing Neatly or Professionally

Tips to Remember

  • No gum chewing!
  • Listen carefully to what the recruiter has to say!
  • Avoid using filler words such as “um”, “like” and “you know.”
  • Demonstrate confidence through your body language and voice.
  • Offer a resume and be able to speak to it.
  • Ask for a business card so you can follow up.

After the Fair

  • Follow up!
    • If you said you would send anything to the employer after the fair (completed application, resume, etc.) be sure to follow through.
    • If you spoke extensively with an employer, send a thank-you letter within 3 days of the event.
  • Write to any prospective employers you are still interested in whether you talked with them at the Fair or not.
  • Debrief yourself! What would you do differently the next time around?
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