August Part-Time Job Fair: Six Keys to Success

The 2015 Part-Time Job Fair is less than three weeks away: August 27th!  All students are welcome to participate and while you can simply show up that day to the MizzouRec Complex it’s in your best interest to do a little planning in advance. I have outlined some simple steps to help you make the day successful!

The 2015 Part-Time Job Fair is less than three weeks away: August 27th!  All students are welcome to participate and while you can simply show up that day to the MizzouRec Complex it’s in your best interest to do a little planning in advance. I have outlined some simple steps to help you prepare for employer interactions and make the day successful!

1. Research Employers and Positions
There will be more than 60 employers attending the fair including on-campus departments, local businesses, and non-profits. All job vacancies are paid positions and there are a variety of jobs ranging from retail sales, programming, childcare, youth advocacy, food preparation, fundraising, customer service and more. Simply click here and select the “View Employers Attending” button to see the complete list of participating employers and open positions.  This way you can decide in advance who you want to speak with and prioritize which tables you will visit.

2. Look the Part
You want to make a positive first impression so we recommend wearing business casual attire. Check out our Pinterest page for examples of business casual attire or scan our Dress for Success infographic.  Business casual dress includes:

Bottoms:

  • Slacks/khakis
  • Skirt with appropriate hemline (just above knees)
  • Sandals, loafers, dress shoes in good condition – no sneakers!

Tops:

  • Longer dress shorts
  •  Blouse
  • Button up shirt
  • Polo
  • No t-shirts or tank tops

3. Bring Materials
Students must bring their Student ID to enter the building. We also recommend having a folder or portfolio with you so you can collect business cards, company brochures, and job applications. There will be some empty tables at the event where you can fill out applications on-site and return them to the employer. Also, please bring copies of your class schedule. Finally, many employers will ask for and/or accept resumes.

Need help creating or editing your resume? You may stop by the MU Career Center between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, for one-on-one assistance. You may also upload your resume to HireMizzouTigers.com for personalized feedback. Please check out our online resources for sample resumes and resume advice.

4. Employer Interactions: Make an Introduction
When you approach an employer be sure to smile, make good eye contact, shake hands and introduce yourself!  At  the job fair, there are many people trying to meet a recruiter who has a short amount of time to spend talking to you. To make the best use of that precious time, you should prepare a one-minute commercial of yourself. In this “commercial” you will:

  • Introduce yourself, giving your name, year in school, and major.
  • Explain why you are interested and the relevant experience you have.
  • Be open, honest, and enthusiastic.

Example #1: “Hello, my name is _________, and I’m a junior studying Sociology. I am very interested in working at the YMCA because it will allow me to spend time doing what I love which is working with children.”

Example #2: “Good afternoon! My name is ____________________ and I am a freshman Business major. I have background working in customer service and retail so I thought this sales position would be a natural fit with my work experience and future career plans.”

We recommend you practice your “commercial” with a friend so that you become comfortable with your introduction.

5. Be Prepared for Questions
Employers will likely ask you questions that you would expect to hear in the first stage of an interview. For instance, they may ask:

  •  Tell me about yourself.
  • Why are you interested in the position?
  • What skills/experience do you have that would relate to this position?

Employers also expect that you will have questions for them. Come prepared by thinking about the type of information you would like to know about the position. Examples of questions you could ask would be:

  • What sort of skills are you looking for in an employee?
  • What does a typical part-time work schedule look like at your organization?

6. Be Open to Opportunities
Did you know that there are a number of “off” campus employers are just a short walk from the Columns? Don’t dismiss off-campus jobs assuming they are far away. If you lack transportation ask about that first and Google map where employers are located. Not sure about a job title or don’t recognize the company name? It’s worth talking with the recruiter and finding out more information! Great opportunities can come in a variety of settings be it a small business, family-owned operation, government agency or not-for-profit!

If you follow these suggestions you should have a VERY  successful day at the job fair. And don’t forget to check HireMizzouTigers! Each day employers post new part-time job vacancies so don’t delay – apply when you see jobs of interest and follow-up with employers once you submit an application or inquiry.

If you have other needs please visit the Career Center at any time between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday through  Friday. We are located on the lower level of the Student Success Center on Lowry Mall. Good luck with your job search!