Have something to showcase.
What steps are you taking today to achieve your ultimate career goal?
What projects are you pursuing that demonstrates your commitment to your stated area of interest?
What are you doing to prove that you are more than just talk?
For example if you have an interest in fashion how does your resume and experience showcase your dedication to this area? What have you done that illustrates your passion and excitement for this field? For example have you interned with any designers? Do you write or contribute to fashion blogs? How about a YouTube show where you discuss fashion trends? It isn’t enough to have lofty and exciting goals, you must also demonstrate your commitment to these goals based on your activities. Your activities serve to a potential employer as proof of your stated area of interest. If you can’t showcase your interest then it’s just talk.
Your Actions Impact Others
When you participate in your school’s on-campus recruiting program you represent yourself, your school, your career services center, fellow students and alumni. You contribute not only to the development of your personal reputation you also aid in how others perceive your institution of higher learning. If you value your education you will take the necessary care to guard how you conduct yourself particularly if you are a student who is currently enrolled. It is very important that you behave in a way that reflects positively upon all parties who may be impacted by your actions. It is isn’t only important to be active on campus, dress appropriately, participate in events and prepare for interviews for you, it is important to the reputation of your school. If you demonstrate to employers that you are a candidate of high caliber they will be very willing to revisit your school to find other students like you. You’ve invested quite a bit in your college education, protect your investment by considering how your actions impact all stake holders who are involved in the campus recruiting program.
Many students mistakenly attend career fairs with the intention of finding a job. Perhaps that was the original intent of these functions however they are quickly evolving into to opportunities to for making connections and showcasing your brand. Many companies will tell you that career fairs are not always appropriate for gaining in depth information about a candidate, but they are ideal opportunities for each organization to enhance brand recognition and interface with students in a way that is clearly unavailable via the internet.
I encourage students to use career fairs in the same way. This is an opportunity for you to learn about the needs and desires of the firms in attendance. It is also a great tool for connecting with individuals who may be impressed by your qualifications upon first glance. Dont over look career fairs, instead use them as an opportunity to learn from individuals who are where you wish to be: employed with your firm of choice.
Imagine companies throughout the country have determined that they need a new generation of leaders to one day helm their organizations. Many know that sometimes Senior Associates while experienced are at times jaded and made rigid from past experiences. Some refuse to learn and conform to company culture and sometimes they want more money than the company is willing to spend for their particular expertise. What is a Hiring Manager to do? How can he or she fulfill their firm’s needs while keeping costs low? The answer is: drum roll please…. recruit college students. For this and many other reasons employers throughout the country descend on college campuses each year seeking out qualified grads.
Of course each company can’t visit each campus, so they select Target or Core schools based on the needs of the organizations and the curriculum of various programs. This effort is often led by the alumni. Many companies will ONLY select their target or core school based on the where their current (usually high-ranking) employees graduated. Think about it: It’s not a bad idea. If you get one or several great candidates from one area why not return for more of the same. These companies vie for the attention of the top of the class. As a college student you are privileged within the context of the job search process there is a whole mechanism and machine devoted to ensuring you are employed by some of the best companies in the world. At no other time or point in your life will companies proactively seek and attempt to employ you so fervently as if you are top student enrolled in or graduating from a program of choice.