Are you an international student seeking an internship or job in the upcoming year? If so, you are encouraged to attend the Center for Career Development’s Virtual Career Fair week in September. This is an excellent opportunity to network with employers and to practice speaking in front of professionals via video conference.
If you’ve attended Career Fairs in previous years, you will notice format changes for 2020. The entire Fair will be remote. Attendees will participate in an online format with 10-minute 1:1 live video sessions or 30-minute group sessions to engage with representatives from over 150 companies.
The Center for Career Development is hosting 5 days of Virtual Career Fairs. The schedule is as follows:
September 21-25, 2020, 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm
Monday, September 21 – Actuarial Sciences
Tuesday, September 22 – Healthcare, Entertainment/Sports and Media/Creative Communications
Wednesday, September 23 – Insurance, Financial Services, and Retail
Thursday, September 24 – Social Impact and Government
Friday, September 25 – STEM Industries
Students of all years and all majors and alumni may sign up for multiple days/fairs, and schedule as many sessions as fit your availability.
After you have registered for a Virtual Career Fair, you will have an opportunity to explore the employers who seek international candidates. When searching for potential jobs, you can filter employers who “accept OPT/CPT” or “will sponsor or doesn’t require U.S. work visa”. You will be prompted to answer the question “are you legally able to work in the US? Will you require a visa now or in the future?”
Review the blog published in March 2020: Career Fair Preparation for International Students which provides advice about understanding your visa status and on how to discuss this with representatives.
Here are the steps to register for the Career Fair:
- Create or update your Handshake account https://career.uconn.edu/handshake/
- Register for the Career Fair in “Events in Handshake”
- Schedule appointments with employers for your individual or group sessions
- Prepare a U.S. Style Résumé emphasizing your global skills, talents, and attributes. Post your résumé in Handshake – see sample International Student Resume Example: Undergraduate and International Student Resume Example: Graduate Student
On the day of the event, dress the part in professional attire, find a distraction-free, quiet location for your video chat, position yourself in front of a plain wall if possible, and test your technology. During your session, use eye contact (which is challenging remotely). Before ending the discussion ask the employer for contact information. The employer may or may not provide an email. This is often based on a company’s policy about what information they can provide potential job candidates.
After the event, when possible, it is important to send thank-you emails to all of the representatives whom you conversed with. Include a copy of your résumé too, which will create a lasting impression. If possible, look the recruiter up on LinkedIn to make a connection to expand your network and build relationships. It’s also essential to apply to any positions that are interesting to you.
Register today to secure your private 1:1 session or to attend a group session with an employer.
Desirée is a Career Coach at UConn’s Center for Career Development
By Desirée Martino