By Ada Zhang
Job searching can be tedious and frustrating, but Baylor provides an opportunity for students to meet potential employers at a single event.
The Baylor Office of Career and Professional Development is hosting a career fair for graduating students seeking full-time employment and younger students seeking internship opportunities in various industries. The career fair this year will be bigger than it has ever been and is moving off campus.
This event will take place from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday in the Waco Convention Center. Students need to bring their student IDs as well as copies of their resumes. They are also advised to dress professionally.
A shuttle service will be available to assist students with transportation to and from the convention center. Two shuttles will pick students up from behind the Cashion Academic Center at Fourth Street and Speight Avenue to take them to the convention center.
Carolyn Muska, director of professional development, said these shuttles will be cycling every 15 minutes to pick up and drop off students.
Most companies at the career fair are open to all majors. A list of the companies that are attending is posted at baylor.edu/cpd.
The career fair is held twice every year, once in September and again in February. Both career fairs are open to all majors.
This is the first time, however, that the career fair has been held in the convention center. In the past, the event was held at the Ferrell Center.
“This is the first time we’ve had 135 employers,” Muska said. “Because of the size, we’ve had to move locations. Three-hundred-twenty-five recruiters will be there with these companies. With those numbers, we needed a larger venue.”
In the convention center, each company will set up its own booth.
“Anywhere from one to 12 recruiters will be at each booth representing the organization,” Muska said. “There is an average of two recruiters per company.”
Kevin Nall, director of employer relations, said students should research five to 10 companies that they are interested in.
He said this sort of preparation will allow students to engage in intelligent conversations with employers as well as show employers a high level of enthusiasm.
“On Hire A Bear, you’ll know the job description and that allows you to connect the dots of what they’re looking for and their background,” Nall said. “If these companies are looking for certain experience you’ve had, you can talk to them about that. That’s much more meaningful conversation.”
Besides doing research prior to the career fair, following up with employers afterward is also important, Nall said.
He said students should send an email to employers thanking them for attending Baylor’s career fair. Nall said students should remind employers of what was discussed at the career fair so employers can easily recall to whom they spoke.
“Another good way to follow up is LinkedIn,” Nall said. “Most people are not going to do that, so it’s going to create a memorable impression with the recruiter.”
To be a more competitive candidate, Nall said students should put effort into their appearance.
“Recruiters know it’s a hassle,” Nall said. “So they recognize the effort. There’s goodwill you build by doing that.”
Nall said attending the career fair gives graduating students a head start on searching for jobs.
For sophomores and juniors, Nall said the career fair is a chance to not only find internship opportunities, but also to learn what different companies are looking for so they can be prepared to apply for jobs in the future.
The biggest advantage of attending the career fair, Nall said, is getting to meet recruiters who are specifically looking to hire Baylor students.
“They’re spending money and time to come to Baylor and recruit Baylor students.” Nall said. “They are a friendly crowd.”