A Guide to Careers & Employment (Part 2- Careers Fair) (Hiruni)
As promised, here is part 2 of my guide to the Careers and Employment services at the university.
With the Careers Fair occurring a few weeks ago and the application period for internships opening quite soon, I thought I’d post about career decisions and opportunities more specific to second year and beyond.
The University offered three fairs this year: the Business and Consulting fair, the Engineering, IT and Built Environments fair and the Graduate Careers fair (all degrees), which I attended. While attending a fair is encouraged for students in all years, I found that some companies focused on their opportunities aimed towards postgrads (perhaps because my major is in engineering).
Although I did my best to prepare beforehand, with the help of the University’s Careers Fair app, this fair was certainly a learning experience for me because it was the first time I had attended. Here was what I learned:
- I expected the fair to be a formal and structured event where we would take turns speaking and mostly just listen to the representatives, however many employers treated it as an open conversation between a group of students where we could steer the conversation ourselves and ask questions as it progressed.
- Although the employers are the main attraction, it’s also helpful to talk to the Graduate Careers representatives about some more general questions you may have.
- The fair is a great way to network with smaller, local companies who you may not have heard of before. As a chemical engineering student, most of the companies I was aware of were in oil and gas, but I also found local companies that had opportunities relevant to my degree.
- Have some prior knowledge of the companies you intend to talk to and the internships they offer- this way you can focus on more specific questions.
- Although you may be tempted to just ask your question and move along, it is worthwhile to listen to other students’ queries. This was especially helpful as many of the students I was with were older than me and most likely had some experience with internship applications.
If you didn’t get to attend the fair this year
Don’t worry if you were’t able to attend. Careers and Employment are holding various Employer Presentations throughout the semester where you will have an opportunity to find out about employment opportunities and get a chance to talk to current employees. Past employers include Citi, Microsoft and Goldman Sachs.