By. Art Ortega |Staff Writer|
Students had the opportunity to network with big shot employers last week during the Career Fair held in the Student Union.
Over 50 employers were present at the career fair: Target, Sherwin Williams, Department of Environmental Health, FIDM, U.S. Foods and Bridgestone just to name a few.
“I was mostly interested in AT&T,” said student Lindsay Colombo.
“They seemed to have a better opportunity for employment and the recruiters were friendlier than the others.”
Student Richard Castrejon also found an interest in AT&T since they were looking to hire about 50 people.
Many came dressed professionally, and though a few students didn’t get the memo, employers later stressed the importance of dressing accordingly.
Some noted, the first impression is a lasting impression, and it can make or break an interview opportunity.
Store manager for Sherwin Williams Natalie Zwerner mentioned that it is one of the most common errors students make.
“Dressing in proper business attire and looking sharp conveys a message about yourself. It tells people who you are. When students come in a t-shirt and jeans, it conveys a message that they aren’t very serious about our company,” said Zwerner.
“Another big mistake I see students often make is not knowing what to talk about. When students come to the booth and naturally carry a fluent conversation, demonstrating knowledge of our company, it is a huge plus. We like that.”
Besides dressing the part students it was advised that students make an effort to research companies they become interested in to gain background information.
“It really does show a lot about the student if they ask questions that show they know who were are. It demonstrates an interest in our company, and we are interested in those who are interested in us,” said Lisa M. Meyer, Western Zone recruiter for Bridgestone.
Colombo offered some advice from her success with employers.
“Give a friendly greeting with a smile and make sure you give them a firm hand shake. Maintain strong eye contact, stand up straight and tall, and talk like you know exactly what you want.”
Other employers had completely different views about possible mistakes from students.
“I don’t really judge students based on their looks or the look of their résumé,” said Lester Z. Powell, Hazardous Materials Management Specialist for the Department of Environmental Health. “I give them credit for actually walking in the career fair and taking an interest in their future career.”
Sandi Salas, Environmental Health specialist for the Department of Environmental Health agrees.
“The worst mistake you can make is not learning from one. Other than that, I don’t judge people for making mistakes.”
Meyer was kind enough to leave three pieces of advice for future students:
“Hmm… I would say number one is dress professionally. Number two would be to know what you’re talking about. And number three would be to come prepared for anything and everything.”
“Remember,”Meyer added, “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail!”