We asked, “If your high school was hosting a job fair, what would you want to know beforehand?” You came up with great questions we presented to our experts.
Watch the video below for this multipart segment.
Q. Jake B: “What even is a job fair?”
A: A job fair is an event where several employers gather in one location to talk to many candidates to fill open jobs in their companies.
Q: Becci: “Do I need a résumé?”
A: If you have one, you should bring one. However, it is not required.
Q: Josh J: “What do I wear? Do I have to wear a suit?”
A: At least nice jeans and a collared shirt. No perfume/cologne, loud patterns, or heavy makeup. See the previous blog for the full list of masculine/feminine presenting.
Q: Rhi P: “How do I act?”
A: Make a good first impression by putting your best face forward and smiling. Eye contact is key, as is body language.
Q: Jake J. “What kind of working conditions will there be?”
A: Working conditions can vary from employer to employer. That is a great question to ask recruiters.
Q: Allison H: “How many employers should I talk to?”
A: As many as you can! However, if time is a concern, we recommend you speak to at least 1/3 of the recruiters.
Q: Marty M: “What if I say something dumb?”
A: There is no reason to be nervous. The recruiters want to talk to you and learn about your interests.
Q: Neisa A: “Why should I go?”
A: It’s a fantastic opportunity to explore potential career paths and make connections that could pay off. Plus, spending money for the summer.
Q: Heather W: “How do I even know what to say to an employer?”
A: Start with hello and your name. Be respectful, polite, and yourself. You can read the whole guide in the previous blog.
Q: Tommy M: “How do I talk about a job I’m interested in?”
A: Politely introduce yourself and tell the recruiter which position you’re interested in. They will lead the conversation with questions about you and more information about the job.
Q: Linn A: “Will there be free stuff?”
A: Though we can’t promise anything, job fairs typically offer free goodies and giveaways. This year, SWN is even raffling off Chromebooks.
High school students today are constantly on their phones. Still, a job fair presents a unique opportunity to step out of the digital world and make real connections. Attending an employment fair can be an intimidating experience, but it doesn’t have to be. With the proper preparation and attitude, anyone can make the most of a recruiting event and take the first steps toward their future career. This blog post will guide high school students looking to make the most of their experience.
What to Wear
When attending a job fair, it is vital to dress in a way that conveys professionalism. Generally, this means following the business casual dress code. This can mean different things for male and female-identifying individuals, so knowing what you should and should not wear is essential.
Business Casual Guidelines for masculine presenting:
• A collared shirt (like a polo or dress shirt)
• Slacks or chinos
• Dress shoes
• A belt
• Clean shaven
Business Casual Guidelines for feminine presenting:
• Blouse or a dress shirt
• Skirt or dress pants
• Closed-toe dress shoes
• Modest jewelry
• Hair styled neatly
At the very least, all attendees should wear nice jeans or khakis, a collared shirt, minimal jewelry, and closed-toe shoes. They should not wear perfume/cologne, loud patterns, or heavy makeup.
What to Say
It’s essential to be prepared and practice what you want to say before attending the job fair. Before the fair, you should also research each employer and know what questions you’d like to ask them.
The key is to be professional but friendly. Make sure to smile, make eye contact, and use positive body language when speaking with potential employers. Give an appropriate handshake, maintain an open posture, and keep your voice level and polite.
Remember, a job fair is an opportunity to stand out from the crowd and make a great first impression.
What to Ask
Attending a job fair can be an overwhelming experience for any high school student, but it doesn’t have to be. Knowing what questions to ask is the key to having a successful job fair experience.
It would help to always ask about your desired position when approaching an employer’s booth. Employers are looking for someone enthusiastic and interested in the job, so ensure you know as much as possible about it. You can also ask for more information about the goods and services that the company provides. Asking about the workplace culture is also essential, as it will give you a better idea of whether you would be a good fit for the job.
Finally, ask about new hires’ training and if any extra skills are needed to succeed in the role. Additionally, asking about the hiring procedure and when to expect a response will give you peace of mind about your job prospects at the job fair.
By asking these questions and engaging with employers at a job fair, high school students can gain valuable experience and increase their chances of finding summer work.