It is that time of the year again! The Spring Career Expo will be held on February 19, 2014 at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome from Noon-4:00 p.m. I have provided several helpful tips to assist you in having a successful Career Expo experience.

  1. Refine Your Marketing Materials: Ensure that your cover letter and resume are up to par. Schedule an appointment at the Career Development Center and upload your documents to Employola. Determine what you are looking for – an internship, a full-time position, or a development program.
  2. Do Your Research: Research the employers attending the Career Expo and find the right match for you. In your research, ensure your skill set is in alignment with the ideal candidate the company is searching for. If in doubt a career path is right for you, feel free to schedule an appointment with the Career Development Center.
  3. Plan out Your Professional Dress: Your first impression is a lasting impression! Ensure that you are neat, clean and polished with your business attire. If all else fails, choose a conservative classic look with traditional colors. If you are having second thoughts, schedule an appointment with a career coach in the Career Development Center.
  4. Prepare to Network: Work on your 30 second elevator pitch so that it comes naturally and shows confidence. Ask for business cards/contact information from company representatives that spark your interest. Have an ample supply of resumes; this is your version of a business card. Manage your contacts from employers and follow up with a thank you note after the Career Expo.
  5. Develop a Plan of Action: Arrive to the Career Expo early. Have in mind the companies you would like to visit and in what order. By all means, avoid long lines. Make a note and visit them before you leave the Fair. In developing your game plan, include your personal PDSA method: Plan. Do. Study. Act.

At the Career Expo

What should you ask a Recruiter?  Ask about job/internship opportunities, application process, qualifications, and potential career paths.  Relax and speak slowly. Take notes and distribute your resume. At the end of the conversation, request a business card and/or contact information. Below are sample questions to ask recruiters.

  • What types of positions exist within your company?
  • Does your company hire on a continual basis or just at certain times of the year? How long does the hiring process take?
  • What are the skills and attributes you value most in your employees?
  • What opportunities are there for advancement in the company?
  • Describe some typical projects/assignments for an entry level person in your organization
  • What would you expect your ideal hire to do during the first month with the company?
  • What is the company culture like?
  • How long have you worked for this company and why did you choose this position?

After the Career Expo

What should you do after the Career Expo? Send a quick thank you email to the recruiters you have spoken to within 24 hours if possible. Refer back to something from your conversation and attach your resume as a reference for the recruiter.  Recap your interests in the company and the positions they have available. Keep a file of all contacts made with the employer, including dates and applications material sent to them.

If you would like additional information on Preparing for the Career Expo, you can schedule an appointment with a Career Coach in the Career Development Center by calling 504.865.3860 or stop by the CDC, 208 Danna Student Center.

Also, on Monday February 17th and Tuesday February 18th, 2014 from 12:30 pm – 4 pm the Career Development Center will host Rapid Resume Review with no appointment needed!

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