Landing Your Interview
Written by Cara Olivo
UCF has several opportunities for students to attend career expos throughout the year. Whether you’re in your final semester heading out the door or in your first semester wanting to build your network, these fairs are open to all UCF College of Business students. Not only do we have exclusive access to corporate companies, but UCF also provides workshops to help you figure out what to do after talking with representatives. Seminars like “Advanced Interviewing,” “Freshman Edition: Building Winning Resumes,” and having a “Back-Up Plan.”
I recently had the experience of attending The Invitational this semester and getting an interview out of it. I went in with the mindset of “going for the experience” and to “build my network.” There is nothing wrong with going for the experience if the end goal isn’t necessarily a job or internship. But you do need to have a well-written resume and do some research on what companies will be there because you always want to leave a good impression. This can set you apart from everyone standing in line, wanting to impress representatives for big companies such as Lockheed Martin, Harris, or Marriot Grand Vacations.
Once it is your turn to speak, you want to have questions ready, talking points that will spark the representative’s interest and make them remember your face. Some go-to questions can be, “I’m interested in (insert job title here), what are some skills or characteristics you look for while hiring? What is the 5-10 year trajectory for someone in this position?” Or, “What is your current position, and what does a typical day look like?”. Representatives love to talk about the work they do and how they impact the livelihood of others or their company. Not only will this get them talking, but you could unveil some critical information about who they would most likely hire and see if you align with the company.
Once you leave the event (and collected as many business cards as you can), connect with everyone you talked to on LinkedIn. This is another tactic you can use to make sure you are remembered. These days, companies like to find their talent instead of sifting through thousands of online applications. If you make yourself memorable and available to recruiters, your dream job may find you.