Career Fair is probably the easiest way for university student directly meet employees. Good internship experiences will easier help you stand out of your peers, and help you quickly finish and smooth the transiting from an university student to a professional.

Employee and Hiring Manager

  1. Specific role page. A simple printed page of the role is quite important, i.e. “Software Engineer Intern” on an A4 page with 32 font size is enough. Some student don’t know what role that we have.
  2. Flyers. Company flyers are quite good, it save lots of time for you to introduce the company and the role, and easy to let them to read / think more afterward. our 50 pre-printed flyers were gone in the first hour very quickly.
  3. Swag. Some basic ‘swag’ is necessary. My colleague and I we end up just bought some chocolate bars before the session started, and it still landed okay with students. but if we have budget with these fancy swag that would be a big plus imo.
  4. People. it’s better to have at least 3 people there. 2 is not enough to cover all the inquiries. a good way is to have 2 guy taking inquiries, and then another guy to take notes.
  5. Notes. Some of the career fair application is unfriendly to use, make sure you scan student qr code after discussing with them, and save their profiles properly (click the save button is important). Or use other way to keep your own notes.
  6. Quick break. Have a 30 sec ~ 1 mins break before each inquiry is also a good approach, so that you can get sometime to jot down your instant feedback about the student that you just met before.
  7. Applicant information. Get yourself familiar with applicant information. Straightforwardly pointing out candidate’s name, resume details, project experiences etc is a quite a good way of showing that you value about your applicants.

University Student

  1. Get yourself prepared. If you are interested in to a company, a specific area, or a specific role, do your research before you joining the event! Prepare your self-introduction, your career goal, reason why you apply for the internship in this company, etc. If possible, try to search the company on LinkedIn, and find the hiring manager of the role would be a big plus.
  2. Ask good and smart question. By asking good questions will show your interests to the role, and quickly help you to stand out of the crowd, and represent your preparation and eager about the company and the role. Here are some sample questions that you can ask:
    • What is your role in the company?
    • What is the reason for you to join this company?
    • What is the reason for you to keep you still in the company?
    • What is your plan after I join the company?
    • What kind of requirements are you looking for specifically for this role?
  3. It’s okay to be a blank canvas as an university student, but you need to have a good idea of what you want to be for your career. It will also help employee to assist you to calibrate your direction.
  4. Try to be professional. The role as a student is quite different with a professional. Try to be as professional will give the employee a good first impression.
  5. Try to stand out of crowd. Normally in a career fair event, a hiring manager will meet and chat with lots of students who have similar background. Try to stand out the crowd will help to be shortlisted by the hiring manager.
  6. Be proactive. Simply sending out a follow-up email after the interview to continue express your interests to the role will let you stand out (a bit) from hiring manager perspective. It’s all about small things and sometimes things can help you a lot.