Career & Internship Fair | Webster University

Career and Internship Fairs

Career and internship fairs are great opportunities for meeting employers. To prepare for success, navigate through each of the sections below. 

Before the Fair

Research Companies and Organizations Attending

Research the companies and organizations attending the event. Based on your occupations of interest, determine which employers you want to speak with at the event. Be sure to note the type of students in which the company or organization is interested. For example, a non-profit organization may be looking to hire an accounting intern, while a financial services organization may need to hire a human resources employee. Conduct research on your target employers by reviewing the company’s website, checking Handshake and the company’s website for available job or internship openings, and doing a Google News search for recent company headlines.

Prepare A Resume

Create or revise your resume. Upload your well-written resume to Handshake and bring copies to the fair. Not all employers will accept paper resumes, but bringing them shows that you are prepared and that you planned ahead. Seek assistance from the Career Planning & Development Center as you create your first resume or hone an existing one. 

Prepare Your Introduction

Prepare to initiate conversations with employers at the fair by practicing your personal introduction. Include your name, major, graduation date, and a summary of your skills and qualifications in a brief 30-60 second intro (or "commercial"), then express interest in the employer. Some students will introduce themselves to an employer by explaining their professional and academic present, past, and future (goals). 

Check Professional Attire

Be sure that your suit or professional outfit fits well and that it is clean and pressed. If you need to purchase professional attire, consider shopping at upscale resale shops such as Rung. Large retail stores also have affordable options.

During the Fair

Appear and Act Professionally

On the day of the fair, wear professional attire, including a name tag which the CPDC will provide to you at the event. Bring a portfolio or folder with a pen, copies of your resume, and a list of target companies with whom you hope to connect. Present yourself in an approachable and confident manner. Introduce yourself with a firm handshake, maintain eye contact, and be attentive to non-verbal communication from company and organization representatives. Be polite, and avoid cell phone use (calls and texts) during the fair.

Ask Questions

Ask thoughtful and appropriate questions. Sample questions include:

  • Describe the type of employees and/or skills you are seeking.
  • What are the top three needs at (company name) or in (department name)?
  • Describe your experiences at (company name).
  • How did you get into this career field/organization?
  • What type of internships, jobs, or volunteer positions does your organization have available?

Ask for the employer’s business card when appropriate and gather any available literature. Note that it is inappropriate to ask questions about salary in this setting.

Take Notes

Following a conversation with an employer, take a few minutes to step aside to a quiet spot to jot down notes about your impressions or questions you'd like to ask when you follow up. Some students will write notes on the back of an employer’s business card to make follow-up easier.

Abide by the Webster University Code of Conduct

Participants are expected to follow the policies and procedures that are outlined in the Webster University Student Code of Conduct.

After the Fair

Send Follow-Up Notes

Send a thank you or a follow-up note (email or written) to companies and organizations with whom you spoke at the fair. Use the business cards and notes you took during the fair to make your follow up specific.

Apply to Openings

If employers at the fair suggest that you apply via their company website, be sure to follow through and apply. Many employers cannot consider candidates unless they have formally applied through the company’s applicant tracking system. Even if you handed a resume to an employer, check their website for a formal online application system.

Organize Your Information

A strategic approach for a successful job or internship search is organization. Track the employers you are interested in, positions you have applied to, and document all follow-up notes. You can use a tracking spreadsheet or another preferred method to keep yourself organized. 

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