Career Fairs are an amazing way to meet a large number of recruiters in a short period of time. It also saves you the stress of waiting for a call-back from an on-line application. Check out this two (2) minute video for an overview of how you can succeed at a career fair.
In Person STEM Career and Intern Fair: Thursday, September 23rd and Friday, September 24th, 2021 from 10am-3pm, in our Campus Center
Virtual STEM Career and Intern Fair: Thursday, October 7th, 2021 from 10am-3pm, virtually through Handshake
Most career fairs for Engineering and Technology majors happen in the fall semester. The two best for our Students are the STEM Career and Intern Fair, held at IUPUI and the Industrial Roundtable, held at Purdue West Lafayette. Be sure to see if there are career fairs specific to your major like the Construction Management career fair at Purdue West Lafayette.
How to Work a Career Fair
A career fair is a networking event with employers for internships, co-ops and full time positions. It gives you a chance to market your skills, abilities, education and experience. You also have the opportunity to obtain information from the employer with the hopes of securing an interview.
Before the Fair
Go to a career fair workshop offered by the school. See the event list for offerings.
Have your resume reviewed by Career Services.
Know your target companies and do your research on them.
Sign up for a time to meet with recruiters via the Career Fair App if attending the virtual fair.
Have target questions for each company.
Clean up anything questionable on social media - yes, they check!
Download the App
The App contains a list of all the Companies that will be in attendance along with the positions they will be looking to fill. You can indicate your favorites, sign up for a meeting time (if attending virtually) and can even type up notes on each organization.
When you meet with a Recruiter, know what you are going to say. A good example of this is:
"Hi, my name is John Doe and I'm a Mechanical Engineering student at the Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI graduating in May 2022. I'm looking for a summer internship and am interested in XYZ Company because of their innovative work on locomotive engines. "
End this opening with a pause to see if they have questions about your background. If they don't, ask them a question such as "can you tell me about your internship program" to keep the conversation going.
Yes, you need one. It helps employers put a face with a name after they meet you at a career fair. It also gives them a way to contact you and could lead to job opportunities. Make sure to include the information (keep it updated!) from your resume on your profile along with a professional picture.
Dress the Part
Even if you are attending a virtual career fair, business professional attire is encouraged.
Conservative business attire. No jeans, sweats or sneakers.
Be well groomed.
Bring a padfolio or nice folder with resume copies and something to take notes with (if its an in-perosn fair).
Smell fresh and clean, not overpowering. No perfume or cologne.
Fall Virtual STEM Fair
This virtual event will take place on Thursday, October 7th from 10am-3pm in the Handshake Platform.
Most of the major career fairs including the IUPUI STEM and West Lafayette Industrial Roundtable will be virtual for 2021. Instead of physically attending the fair and standing in a line to meet with recruiters, you will have the opportunity to set up a ten minute appointment time with recruiters you are interested in speaking with. The same career fair rules apply. You should do your research on employers in advance, dress for success and practice your elevator pitch.
Virtual Career Fairs
Virtual career fairs are online 'events' that allow employers and students to meet via video and offer a number of advantages to both students and employers! Students benefit by saving valuable time which can be used on employer research and practicing elevator pitches. Moreover, students have the opportunity to meet with a wider range of employers, since they don’t have to stand in long lines.
We will be working with Handshake to host our 2021 virtual spring career fair, to create an intuitive, user-friendly experience for students and employers. Please download the Handshake app in preparation for the virtual fair.
What to do before the virtual fair:
Create a PDF of your resume after having it reviewed by the career services office. We will be offering several resumanias in September and October to have employers critique your resumes. You can also email your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org for feedback.
Find your desired employer in the list and reserve a spot to see them. Reservations will begin being accepted on Tuesday, September 21st at 9am. Registration for sign-ups will close on Tuesday, October 5th at 5pm.
The day before the fair:
Review your schedule so you know when all of your appointments are.
Show up to your appointment 2 minutes before your scheduled time.
Identify the recruiter you are meeting.
If they are with their previous appointment stand close and wait for them to finish.
When they are free, let them know you are present for your career fair appointment.
If you haven’t uploaded your resume at this point, be sure to do so. The recruiter will be able to see it in their app which makes things much easier for everyone.
More details along with some great virtual career fair tips can be found here
Throughout the months of August and September our office offers several opportunities for you to attend workshops on how to prepare for the career fairs. Be sure to check out our events listings to find the next available one.
If you are unable to attend a workshop but would like to prepare, schedule an appointment with us and we would be happy to get you career fair ready.