Career Fair Preparation

Hey Tigers! With temperatures cooling down, Mizzou’s career fair season is heating up! Throughout September and October, Mizzou will be hosting a plethora of job fairs on campus. Employers from around the country gather to give students the opportunity to network, seek out internships, and find potential work after graduation. At first, career fairs can feel overwhelming, but with the proper preparation, you can make good impressions and network effectively!

Signing up

To get started, check out HireMizzouTigers to get a brief overview of which career fairs would best fit your schedule and career path. Then, click on the event name so you can register for the event in advance on Handshake. 

Know the Employers

Once you know what fairs you are attending, you need to research! Employers meet hundreds of students so it is important to leave your mark. Be sure to thoroughly research companies you are interested in. Some things you might want to look into include:

  • Searching the company to see if they have made any headlining news recently (mergers, competitions, etc.)
  • Looking into who are their biggest competitors
  • Learning what workplace environment they have by searching the company through Glassdoor 

 Recruiters appreciate students who are already acquainted with their company, which will help build a repertoire.

Prepare for the Fair

Before going to a job fair, it is important that you practice your “elevator pitch” with friends or family. The career fair can be busy, so it is important that you keep your pitch brief, yet informative. Some details you might want to share include: Intro (name, school year and major), skills, experience, career goals, and interest in the company. Be sure to bring multiple copies of a resume or portfolios to leave with employers so they can contact you. 

Dress Properly 

First impressions are crucial when you are meeting a recruiter for the first time. To make a good impression, students should wear business attire that is unwrinkled and fits properly. To learn more tips about how to dress business casual, view this infographic or our Pinterest boards with pictures of proper attire.  

If you are unable to purchase professional attire, Truman’s Closet rents out free, formal clothing to all Mizzou students and staff. Truman’s Closet is located at the Hitt Street Parking Garage and is open on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday afternoons. 

Follow Up

After the fair, send a thank you email within 48 hours of meeting them, so you are fresh in their mind. Try and be specific about why and how you would be a good fit for a position at their company. Be sure to keep an eye on your inbox and reply in a timely manner. 

If you have any questions, be sure to drop into the MU Career Center. We are open from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm weekdays – no appointment needed.

Take a deep breath Tiger, and start networking!