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How to Navigate Your School’s Career Fair – Even If You’re a 1st Year Student

Myth: Career Fairs are only for students looking for postgraduate jobs.

False! This is the PERFECT opportunity for ALL students to

1) practice networking

2) practice their handshake

3) find internships – either part-time or summer

4) meet potential future employers

Your college has invited hundreds of people with hiring power to be IN ONE ROOM at ONE TIME. Take advantage of this – every year.

If you’re convinced to go, but you’re not sure what to say – try this.

I sent this exact email to my advisees/mentees/students:

Hello Everyone!

This is just a friendly reminder that the Career Expo is taking place tomorrow!


Here’s my challenge for you:

1. Go to the [company] booth and meet [alumnus name]. She’s a grad from our school, she’s amazing, and she’s approachable. Tell her that you’re my mentee – that’s your conversation starter.

2. Introduce yourself to person at another company and ask one of these questions:

a. What type of skills are you looking for in new hires?

b. What internship opportunities exist – and what’s an example project that an intern works on?

c. Are there any part-time intern opportunities?


3. Email me and tell me how 1) and 2) went.

Go Go Go!

Your biggest fan,

Dr Griffin

In case you’re wondering, the alum didn’t know I was going to send 15 students her way. She couldn’t remember exactly how many students mentioned our connection, but she said it was ‘a lot.’ Three students emailed me to let me know how it went.

As a student, I didn’t always know how to start conversations. Don’t let that hold YOU back.

· Introduce yourself.

· Ask questions.

· Listen to what they are saying.

· Follow-up with an email thanking the person you spoke with [you need a business card for this].

You’d be surprised at how those 4 things will set you apart from your colleagues.

Go Go Go!

Your Biggest Fan,


How have YOU navigated your school's career fair? Comment below!


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