A Career Fair is an interactive event that connects Bobcats to employers. Each semester, TXST hosts multiple Career Fairs in the LBJ Student Center Ballrooms. Career Services invites representatives from hundreds of companies who are ready to hire Bobcats for full-time jobs or internships. This is your chance to make a great first impression on an employer, hand out your resume and potentially be invited to interview or be hired!
How to attend a Career Fair
Why should I go to a Career Fair?
It is a very unique opportunity to be surrounded by hundreds of employers who are actively hoping to hire! Even more special is that every employer is hoping to hire a Bobcat. At a TXST Career Fair, you can find a full-time job after graduation or an internship.
Should I go to the fair if I’m in my first years of college?
Attending the Career Fair as a first or second year student can be a valuable experience. It may be a great place to talk to experts in an industry that you are interested in exploring or learn about qualifications needed for a future job or internship that you can begin working toward. It may also help ease the nerves to attend a fair in the future when you are actively looking for that internship or entry-level job!
I’m very nervous to attend the fair, is this normal?It is normal to feel nervous before a Career Fair. The fairs can be daunting, but knowing what to expect can really help. Read through this Q&A to get a better feel for what to expect. If you are feeling nervous before walking into the ballrooms, you can find a Career Services staff member to talk to and ask questions or run through your elevator speech. It may also be helpful to identify why you are nervous. Is it due to a fear of “failing” at the fair? If so, the truth is that attending a fair is a success all on its own, and if you can conquer a fair, it will help you in future interviews and networking opportunities. If the fear is linked to other practical questions, you can reach out to a Career Counselor or Career Educator for more specific help.
What can I expect from a Career Fair?
- Check in: You will begin by checking in using your student ID or NetId if your ID is unavailable to you or you forgot it. The check-in area will be outside of the ballroom and will be marked with signage.
- Fair Maps: Grab a fair map at the check-in table to see where the various employers are and find employers that you’d like to visit with. You can make a plan before you enter or just walk in and begin meeting employers!
- Backpack Drop: You will drop your backpack, if you have one, off at the backpack room. The backpack room will be outside of the ballrooms and will be marked with signage. A Career Services team member will be with the bags ensuring that your items are secure.
- Walk In: It’s then time to walk into the fair! You can expect anywhere from 60-200 employers waiting in the ballroom ready to hire a Bobcat. Employers will be stationed at various tables in the ballroom with signs describing who they are and what they do. Some may have free swag for you to take.
- During the fair: Get started on your journey through the fair. You can choose any table to approach. The representatives are here to meet you and want to engage in a conversation, so don’t worry about having a natural entrance. Recruiters may start off the conversation by saying hello and asking you an opening question, but if they do not you can start off by introducing yourself and asking about the company and what positions they have available. They may ask for your contact information or ask to see your resume.
- Interviews and following up: Some employers may offer you an interview shortly after the fair. If you are interested in an employer, grab their contact information through a flyer, a business card or by asking.
- Follow up: This step is crucial! If you are interested in an employer, reach out using the contact information you gathered during the fair.
How do I prepare for a Career Fair?
- Resumes: Review your resume using our guidelines, drop-in for a resume review, or attend our Resume Express event. This event is an excellent opportunity to have your resume reviewed by industry experts, some of whom will be at the fairs hiring! Once you are confident in your resume, print out a few dozen copies.
- Research: Look on Handshake to see what employers will be at the fair and head to their websites or social media to learn more about their organization. Learn about their mission, company culture and what positions they have available. This will show employers your knowledge going into your conversations at the fair.
- Talk to a mentor: If you are nervous or feel that you would benefit from advice, reach out to a Career Educator or Counselor at Career Services. If there is a trusted mentor in your life such as a Professor, TA, or another leader, it may be good to talk to them and get advice or practice your elevator speech.
- Dress: Make sure you prepare your outfit ahead of time so that there is no need to rush as the fair gets closer. If you are unable to access professional wear, head to the Career Closet early or watch out for the JCPenney Suit Up Sale Event!
What should I wear to a Career Fair?
The attire for all Career Fairs is business casual to business formal. Indeed defines business casual as: “traditional business wear with a more relaxed style that's still professional and appropriate for an office environment.” Depending on the industry, you may want to dress business professional which includes a jacket and dress pants or a dress skirt. Deciding what to wear is up to personal preference as well as industry. You can visit the Career Closet to find professional dress, but at the end of the day you are a unique candidate and your dress is only one aspect of what will make you shine during the fair. The best choice of outfit to wear to the Career Fair is the best choice that you have available to you – the rest of what will make you stand out as a candidate is how you prepare for the fair and research employers and your industry.
What employers will be at the fair?
All employers who are attending a Career Fair register through Handshake. You will find all of the career fairs under the events section of Handshake.
Which Career Fair should I go to?
Our suggestion is to research the employers at all fairs and see what positions they are hiring for. Whichever fairs have the most enticing positions for you would be a great fair to attend.
Where are Career Fairs held?All Career Fairs are held in the LBJ Student Center Ballrooms.
Do I have to register ahead of time?There is no need to register ahead of time.
What should I bring with me into the fair?
Here is a checklist:
- Printed copies of resumes (At least 20)
- At least 1 pen
- Business cards if you have some printed
- Padfolio to keep papers and business cards sorted
- A business-appropriate bag to put free employer swag into
What do I do with my backpack if I have it with me? Can I bring it in to the fair?We recommend not entering the fairs with a backpack. We will have a designated backpack drop-off room where you will be able to keep your bag while you are in the fair. A Career Services team member will be with the bags ensuring that your items are secure!
Students can utilize their paid parking passes to park on campus in their designated zones, or park in the LBJ Student Center Parking Garage for a fee.
Employer partners, sponsors, and recruiters will park in the LBJ Student Center Parking Garage.
Please note, special entrance MAY be open during career fair events. Employers will enter the LBJ Student Center Garage through the bus loop entrance indicated on the map, NOT the Gaillardia Street entrance. Students will continue to use their regular entrance on Gaillardia Street across from Encino Hall. Please follow the instructions emailed to you one week prior to the fair.
Please note: The parking garage entrance height is 7 feet and cannot accommodate oversized vehicles.