The Pace Career Fair, hosted by Co-Op and Career Services for current students and alumni this past Thursday, certainly had all the makings of a successful event. There were plenty of attending employers, including 3 of the “Big Six” publishers, MacMillan, Penguin, and Simon & Schuster.
All the corners of the gym at One Pace Plaza were packed with about 90 company booths and triple the amount of well-dressed people. At the height of the event, it was difficult to move between the rows because there were so many people who were there, vying for the attention of their potential employer. All majors were represented, which proved to make the gym full of competition.
The advantage to going to the Career Fair for me was to potentially meet some of the HR Recruiters I have been sending my resume to. For instance, I had applied for a job at Penguin, which I mentioned to the woman I spoke with at the fair. She made notes on my resume and asked me how I felt about certain aspects of the position. It was like a mini interview! The same ended up being true at the Simon & Schuster table, even though I haven’t applied to a position there yet. Again at Macmillan, I met the recruiter and she really helped me feel like my resume would not be lost in the job application portal. The whole process helped me personalize the application process and job application portals in general. It was a very reassuring moment in my job search quest.
I told most of the recruiters I was interested in internships, so I’m glad I was able to give them my information before they start recruiting for the spring semester. Some even encouraged me to keep connected with them through this semester, like the recruiter from xo.com (formerly the knot.com). She took the time and noticed that I did not have any desktop computer skills; which gives me an opportunity to work on acquiring those skills. So, for any of you interested in magazine publishing, the Pace Job Fair recruiters were there for you, too!
Finally, the most productive booth I visited was the Disney/ABC recruiter, who commanded a line about 30 people deep and met with each of us individually to discuss our resumes. After having mine deconstructed to oblivion, I came away shocked and relieved. I had not heard such criticism about my resume (which had not been formatted since high school, honestly I had it coming), but I also was glad since I obviously needed it so badly. It was a great connection for me and the recruiter promised to send me an email with information on an upcoming Disney open house. It would be a wonderful opportunity for me to meet people who work for their publishing imprint, Hyperion, and to talk to them about internships.
This experience proved to me that job and internship fairs are worth taking the time to attend because making connections and seeing the light at the end of the job search tunnel is really what it’s all about. Since I’m new to the publishing game, this is my first semester in the program, I have learned that it is important to make connections with the people who are a part of the industry, even if (or especially if) it’s with the people who read the resumes.