How to Prepare for a Job Fair

November 22, 2016

A job fair is an event in which employers give information to potential employees. Job fairs offer excellent opportunities for high school and college students to connect with employers and ask questions, and learn what types of jobs employers are hiring for.

Lonnie Martinez, a business and employment specialist with WorkSource Tualatin, helps students get ready for job fairs. "Arrive on time and have a well written résumé," he says. "Employers do not want to hire someone that has a crumpled résumé in their backpack or just hangs out with a bunch of friends." He also suggests using a professional email address for résumés and applications. 

Don't forget a pen when attending a job fair to fill out job applications, provide contact information, or take notes. 

Before the fair, learn about employers that will attend the fair. Look for employers that match your career interests. Prepare questions in advance. 

Prepare a 30-second concise message about your background and career goals. Be ready to communicate your skills and interests. 

When meeting an employer it is important to:

  • Engage with company representatives,
  • Speak clearly and confidently,
  • Offer a firm handshake,
  • Have a positive attitude, and
  • Make good eye contact.

Appropriate attire and good manners are essential! Take the opportunity to speak with several employers. This experience can teach important skills, such as beginning a conversation in a business environment and conducting yourself professionally. 

Collect business cards and send thank-you and follow-up letters or emails to the employers you speak with.