Fall career fair prepares Captains for their futures after college

Many students attended the career fair hosting 52 different organizations

This past Wednesday, the Fall Career Fair took place from 12-3 p.m. in the ballroom of the David Student Union. Students of all years attended to learn about internships and jobs and to network with professionals. 

This year, 52 different organizations were registered to attend the fair including the CIA, the Peace Corps, CoStar and many more. There are many different reasons why students attend the fair.

“People get jobs by talking to people. This is the number one job search strategy.  Christopher Newport students get jobs and internships by talking to people. It works, I’m telling you,” Director of the Career Center Libby Westley said.

The Career Center has thoughts on why students should attend the fair. It is good practice, and practice talking to people is always a good thing. This doesn’t mean that only seniors should attend the fair because they are graduating, but it is beneficial for all students no matter what year they are.

“We want students to practice talking to people from their first semester on campus. Career fairs are a great way to practice talking to people as there are many organizations on campus at once, and they all are specifically interested in Christopher Newport students. This is why we say every student, every class year,  every major should come to every fair for 30 minutes and in that 30 minutes talk to 5 organizations,” Westley said. 

Many students get nervous because it can be intimidating to walk into a room filled with recruiters. It is hard to know what to say and how to say it. Not to mention how hard it is to just walk up to someone and start talking about yourself. 

“Students should emphasize their academic background beyond just saying what year they are, where they are from and what they majored in,” Westley continued. “Students should identify things that make them distinctive and identify ways that these make them relatable to the person with whom they are speaking.”

If you start attending your freshman year, then you will be able to practice and know what to say to these recruiters. It will benefit you in the long run because you can make the most out of your time at the fair. 

Even if you only have 10 minutes, you could talk to at least two organizations and practice. 

“I always recommend that students should speak specifically about a class, a specific paper or project and provide some details about the project and why it was meaningful to them,” Westley said.

Aside from the career fair, the Center for Career Planning has many other resources that are open to students to help them plan for the future. 

“One on one appointments are the best way for students to identify and set career goals, and we recommend students have at least one of those every academic year.  Students can set up an appointment through their Handshake account,” Westley said.

Not only do they help with finding internships, jobs and reviewing resumes, they will also help you find graduate schools and different graduate programs. 

“In October, we have a lot of graduate school programming,” Westley explained, “including the October 2 graduate school fair, sessions on how to write personal statements for graduate school admissions and how to make the most of a grad school campus visit.”

The Center for Career Planning puts on great events like the career fair, but they are always there to help with anything career related a student may need.

~Taryn Hannam-Zatz, News Editor~

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