Monday, January 26, 2009

Quick Career Fair Prep Headquarters

Need help with your resume, networking cards, or career portfolio for the upcoming Career Fair? Come down to SAB 50 from the 26th all the way up to February 13th for personalized advice and assistance. Career Advisor will be available on those days from 11 am to 1 pm.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Your Career Fair Portfolio

The 2009 Springfield Collegiate Career Fair is coming up in just a matter of weeks, and it is now time to start thinking about what you are going to prepare for the career fair. The most essential item that you can bring would be your portfolio.

The portfolio itself needs to be a simple durable container. You can specifically find them near the writing supplies aisles in most department stores and they often are as cheap as ten dollars. Inside your portfolio you will keep all the documents that will be helpful for you at the career fair. Some things to include in your portfolio include:

1. Resume
2. Cover Letter
3. Networking Cards
4. Transcripts
5. Certificates, Awards, or other Special Commendations

Your resume and cover letter are two very important items for your portfolio that you should begin revising or creating now. Since by now you should have a list of employers that you wish to specifically visit, you will be able to customize your resumes to each position. You will also be able to write a cover letter for each employer as well.

Each one of your resumes will at least need to have personalized objective statements for each employer, and at most, will be a completely remodeled resume in regards to your skills. You will want to examine job descriptions from the companies, call the companies for information, visit their websites to do research, or even set up an informational interview with the company to find out what kinds of jobs they are offering to see if they match your interests.

Alongside all of your resumes, you will also be writing well crafted and personalized cover letters for the employers. The cover letters will show your dedication and interest in their companies by showing off your knowledge of their company and how your specific skills will be perfect for the jobs they will be hiring for.

There are many other items you can include in your portfolio. If you think that something shows off your skills, include it. You will also want to make sure that you have up to date and accurate Networking Cards in your portfolio. Details on Networking Cards will be the subject of our next article as well.

If you have any questions about what to include in your portfolio, how to put together a resume or cover letter, or have any career fair related questions in general, the UIS Career Development Center is here to answer your questions. Email us at, call us at 206-6508, or come in and visit us at SAB 50.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

What is a 30 Second Elevator Pitch and What Will It Do For Me?

A 30 second elevator pitch is a “commercial” about you. This pitch is great to give when meeting a recruiter or employer for the first time. This pitch is a brief overview of you and your professional skills and goals. It tells the recruiter/employer a little bit about you and your best abilities. It is important to have an elevator pitch memorized and perfected for the career fair because you will be introducing your self to a large number of recruiters.

To Begin: Start with a firm handshake and give your name (very important). Include information on your professional background, education, professional and academic goals and visions. Avoid personal information and nonrelated details. If you have a business/networking card this would be an excellent time to hand it out! If you do not have one visit for information and how to make or get your own personalized networking cards!

Practice your 30 second elevator pitch to a friend and in front of a mirror. You want to have it memorized and sounding natural when given. Get comfortable with what you have to say so you can breeze through it when the time comes.

Here is a checklist to help you get started:

____ Name
____ Year in School
____ Major
____ Skills
____ Career Goals

Hi, my name is Brett Bretterson, and I am a senior Communications major here at UIS. I’ve worked a lot with television broadcasting over our campus channel, and I liked is a lot. I’m looking for an internship with a local news station in Central Illinois to help me get started in a news-media career.

Nice to meet you, I’m Jackie Jackson. I’m currently a junior at UIS, where I study Computer Science. I hope to become a computer network specialist when I graduate. Right now, I’m looking for an internship with a large company where I can use my networking and troubleshooting skills.

Please Post A Comment:
Have you used a 30 second elevator pitch before?
If so how did it go and do you have any tips for the rest of us?
Sample elevator pitches…

Come down to the Career Development Center (SAB 50) for further assistance or to practice your 30 second elevator pitch.