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Job Fair Tips for Success

Preparing for the Fair
  • Obtain a list of employers attending the fair. Research the employers that interest you. Organize the employer list in your order of priority.
  • Review standard questions asked in interviews.
  • Attendance at job search planning workshops is strongly encouraged.
  • Participate in mock interviews.
  • Plan exactly what professional clothing you will wear.
  • Gather essential items to take to the fair: a letter-sized portfolio with notepad and pen, copies of your resume, and references.
Have pertinent information (addresses, dates, etc.) on hand in case you are asked to fill out an application.

Arriving at the Fair
  • Orient yourself to the facility by locating interviewing areas, telephones, etc.
  • Sit in a quiet area to review the list of employers.
  • Make sure you take a break during the day to assure that you look and feel your best.
  • Be professional and be polite at all times. Remember you are on stage even as you stand in line or move about the interview area.
Approaching the Interviewer
  • As you approach the interview table, respect other people's privacy as they complete their interviews.
  • As you approach the interviewer, establish eye contact, present a firm handshake and introduce yourself.
  • Be confident and assertive during the interview.
  • Be prepared to talk about yourself, i.e., your program area, why you chose it. Do not wait for the recruiter to start asking questions.
Remember, you will have only a few minutes to speak with an employer.

A list of participating job fair companies is available in the Employment Services Center and on the website. Information about specific employers is usually available on the Internet. Additional interview tips are also available in the Employment Services Center.

Interviewing for the Position
  • Know what you want, what you have to offer, and what questions you will want to ask about the company.
  • Listen carefully to the interviewer.
  • Try to show interest by smiling and responding to questions with specific examples.
  • At the end of the interview, offer another firm handshake and thank the interviewer for their time.
  • Ask for the interviewer's business card. This will give you the correct address and spelling of the interviewer's name.
  • Walk away with confidence—remember you are still on stage.
After the interview, go to a quiet area and make notes on the conversation. Then prepare for the next interview.

Following Up After the Fair

Send a thank you letter addressed to the specific interviewer(s) restating your interest in the position. Offer to pro-vide any additional information and close on a positive note.

Guidlines for Professional Dress for Job Fairs and Interviews

It is strongly recommended that you dress professionally for any Job Fair you attend.

Note: A conservative approach is recommended. Looking fashionable is important, but appearing businesslike is even more important. Here are some standard guidelines for Job Fair attire:

  • Business suit/pantsuit in solid color or subtle pattern, conservative length
  • Polished, closed-toe shoes, basic dark pumps with medium or low heels
  • Nails clear or light color (if polished), clean and not chipped
  • Clutch or small shoulder bag; choose between an attaché case or handbag (not both)
  • Always wear hosiery and keep color neutral
  • Makeup should be minimal and understated
  • Navy, black, charcoal gray or pin-stripe suit
  • Polished shoes; dress oxfords, black or cordovan (belt should be same color)
  • Clean nails
  • Conservative tie
  • Solid white shirt, pressed
  • Avoid flashy cuff links, rings or neck chains; no earrings
  • Over-the-calf dark socks
  • Freshly showered
  • Clean clothes
  • No chewing gum
  • One ring per hand with exception of the wedding set
  • Simple and basic jewelry (remove any facial jewelry)
  • Light fragrances, if any
Information gathered from Michigan Collegiate Job Fair.

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