Career fair etiquette subject of TROY seminar

Posted: Monday, 27 September 2010

TROY, Ala.—Troy University will help its students better navigate the waters of career fairs with its second-annual Career Fair Etiquette Seminar September 28-29.

The seminar, scheduled for 3 p.m. – 4 pm. in room 119 in the Trojan Center, is meant to help students prepare for the University’s Career Fair on Oct. 14, said Josh Wooden, a coordinator of career services at TROY.

“You want to have a plan whenever you go to a fair,” he said. “You don’t want to just walk in and just start talking to people. You want to do your research prior to the fair, know who’s going to be there, who to talk to and have a plan of attack.”

Having such a plan of attack, Wooden said, is an essential element for students entering the job market, and in that market, it’s not just about qualifications – it’s also about how students present themselves to potential employers.

The seminar will also help students understand who to talk to first, how to properly follow up after talking to a potential employer as well as how to dress when attending the actual career fair.

“It’s kind of letting you know what to expect so you’re not walking in blind to it,” Wooden said. “It can be overwhelming at times for people coming in to a fair and they don’t know what it’s all about.”

Proper speech and behavior is also addressed in the seminar, and Wooden said it is important that students take advantage of the opportunity because it will prepare them to enter the job market after graduation.

“The way the economy is right now, to take advantage of every opportunity is important,” Wooden said, “because there’s tons of folks out there that are still looking for work, which can make it difficult for students who are coming out with no real-world experience.”

“You have people who have been laid off and that are looking for jobs and have been in the work force a couple years now, so they might have a leg up,” he added. “So, any opportunity you have to sit face-to-face with an employer is going to be beneficial.”

Wooden said the seminar will help students understand how to make a lasting impression.

“You don’t want to make a bad first impression,” he said. “So this is going over the do’s and don’ts, so when you do meet a potential employer, you’re putting your best foot forward and you are making a lasting impression with them that could potentially lead to employment in the future.”