FNR Career Fair - Student Resources​

Reasons to Attend

  • Networking Opportunities
  • Many of the employers that attend the FNR Career Fair will be alumni of FNR; this is a great opportunity to ask questions about career path, choices, recommendations for skills that are important to gain while still at Purdue or as a recent graduate.
  • Employers in your major area are willing to assist you and provide career advice and talk about specific openings with their employer.
  • Watch and read What is Networking? to learn more about this critical process. 
  • Learn more about specific employers and career choices.
  • Make contacts with a particular organization.
CAREER FAIR MYTH:
None of the employers are hiring in my area of interest, so I shouldn't attend.

Even if you are not interested in working for these employers, they may have connections to employers you want to work for. It can never hurt to meet more natural resource professionals, and making a good impression at the Career Fair can lead to opportunities with other employers down the road. Come to the FNR Career Fair to build your professional network!

Do Your Research

  • Check the list of Employers Attending the FNR Career Fair on the main page then research the employers before the career fair.  Review information on the employer website and look for current articles about the employer.
  • Create a list and prioritize the organizations you are most interested in and visit their booths first.
  • Prepare questions to ask that will help you obtain the information you need.
  • Find tips on Conducting Company Research to be better prepared for the FNR Career Fair.
CAREER FAIR MYTH:
I am a freshman with minimal experience, so there is no reason for me to go to the Career Fair.

Several employers at the Career Fair will be offering internships and opportunities that encourage freshmen to apply! Attending the Career Fair is a great way to network with professionals and make yourself stand out early on in your college career. Even if you are not seeking an internship or job, come to practice interacting with employers and get some tips on what you can do to improve your resume. Networking is a skill that will serve you well your whole life, so its best to get an early start!

How to Prepare

  • Read the résumé section in the The Center for Career Opportunities (CCO) Handbook​ for instruction on how to create a résumé.
  • Create a résumé and have it reviewed. 
  • To discuss career fair tips and advice, contact Kindra Rodgers, FNR Academic Advisor/Career Opportunities Coordinator, at klrodger@purdue.edu to schedule an appointment.
  • The Center for Career Opportunities (CCO) provides walk-in assistance on a first-come, first-served basis from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Monday-Friday in Young Hall, Room 132.  CCO also provides online resources assist with résumé preparation.
  • Remember, not every employer will take your résumé; some may ask that you apply online.  You can always seek the advice of an employer about what skills or qualities would be an additional benefit to add to your experiences.
  • Prepare a brief introduction that includes your name, your major, expected graduation or year, what type of position you are seeking, and a question.
  • Be prepared to relate your education/experience/skills to the employer's needs.
  • Rehearse your introduction with a friend or advisor.
  • Plan to be at the fair for at least one hour; give yourself time to talk to employers and wait in lines if there are many students waiting for the same employer.
  • Take notes about who you talked with and what you talked about with each representative.
  • Read "The Art of Networking" section in the the CCO Handbook for additional pointers.
CAREER FAIR MYTH:
Kindra isn’t available to help me with my resume, it’s too late to get help editing it.

BUSTED: While it’s never a good idea to put off working on and editing your resume, it’s never too late entirely! The CCO is always an option to get help and they are easily accessed online or in person. Purdue OWL is an easy online source that’s available 24/7 with lots of good advice. They are also accessible in person, with all the information clearly listed on their website. Finally, ask your friends, mentors, parents, advisors, and professors for help. They have all probably held jobs (or currently hold jobs) or internships and have a resume, so asking them is a great resource as well. Also, as a general note, update your resume regularly. That way you present the most current version of yourself to potential future employers!

What to Bring / What to Wear / What to Do

  • Purchase a nice portfolio to carry your résumés, pen, notepad.  It also provides a place to hold business cards, brochures and take notes after talking with an employer.
  • Bring 10-15 copies of your résumé.
  • When dressing for the FNR Career Fair error on the side of dressing conservatively; wear minimal accessories and watch the quantity of perfume/cologne you apply.
  • For women: nice dress pants or a skirt with a blouse or nice dressy top with dress shoes.
  • For men: nice dress slacks with a collared shirt with dress shoes.
  • Show up early! Some employers pack up and leave the fair early.
  • Greet the employer with a firm handshake and your introduction.
CAREER FAIR MYTH:
I don’t own the right clothes for a career fair. I don’t have a suit. I’ll be coming from a field lab and won’t have time to go home and change.

A suit isn’t necessary to succeed at the FNR Career Fair (although you’re welcome to wear one). Generally, men should be dressed in khakis and a nice, collared shirt. Women should wear dress pants and a blouse. If you do not own or have dress clothes with you, try borrowing from a friend or accessing the CCO closet. Goodwill, Plato’s Closet, and Second Glance are all excellent thrift and second-hand options for acceptable clothing as well.

After the FNR Career Fair

  • Send follow-up correspondence (this could be an email, letter, or hand written note) within 24 hours.
  • Call to request additional information about job opportunities.
  • Apply for the job opportunities that you discussed during the FNR Career Fair
 ​​​​​
​​CAREER FAIR MYTH:
I don’t want to work for any of the employers attending, so I have no reason to go.

You may be surprised at what positions the employers have to offer, or what connections to other employers they may have! These employers can be a valuable resource for you as you search for a job either with them or with someone else. All you have to do is come to the Career Fair and ask them! Besides, you can never have too much networking experience.


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