After the Job Fair: Insights from an Employer

ECHO Center

Amanda Van Vranken
Volunteer/Intern Coordinator

Echo Lake Aquarium & Science Center

What type of applicant is ECHO looking for while at The Job Fair? When it’s over, what is your next step as an employer?

We are always looking for highly motivated individuals whose unique backgrounds and experiences will contribute to our diversity and strengthen our organization. Volunteers and interns bring experience, leadership skills, and enthusiasm to support our mission. After the Job Fair, we look through resumes and begin a conversation with applicants about what might be the best fit for their skills and interests. Since ECHO’s Internships are very competitive, we are often taking applications for the next semester or beyond.

What should students do to follow up with employers of interest?

I highly recommend students always follow up with ECHO. It’s an advantage to show your commitment to the organization, initiative, organizational skills and follow through by asking if an employer needs more information or what the timeline is for hiring. I always appreciate emails from students who are “Just checking in to say hi and say how much they are looking forward to this opportunity”.

How can a student stand out in the application process?

Anything you can do to set yourself apart is welcome.  Identify your skills and use them – If you have strong interpersonal skills, try to meet staff and volunteers. If you have strong writing skills, present a unique resume and cover letter. Draw on experiences or class work and explain why it has initiated growth and contributed to your skill set.  In addition, mention personal contacts or connections that make your reason for applying compelling.

What if a student wasn’t able to attend the Job Fair or didn’t connect with a particular employer?

Students can always go online to look at ECHO’s (or other organization’s) opportunities, as well as apply on-line or email with specific questions. When applying, be pro-active, know your schedule, and be realistic with your time commitments.

Volunteer or Intern at ECHO

The Job Fair: From the Other Side of the Table

Logic Supply display setup

Advice from Lauren Lavallee of Logic Supply, Inc.

Why is Logic Supply coming to the UVM Job Fair?

Logic Supply is attending the UVM Job Fair on March 20th 2013 to connect with students as they prepare to graduate and search for their dream jobs to make them aware of our job opportunities.  Logic Supply has experienced tremendous growth and has been an Inc. 5000 winner for 5 years running. Our success is the result of the high performing individuals that make up our company. We look forward to engaging with UVM students, to explore potential fit with out global growing company.

What should students do to prepare for the Fair?

Students should come to the event with specific objectives in mind. Consider what you’re looking for out of a job and what kind of career path you envision for your future.  Be ready to make an impression, dress appropriately and ask relevant questions to gain a clear understanding of companies and their specific roles.

What makes a student stand out at the Fair?

All companies attending a job fair know you are a student and that this may be your first outreach to a professional company. Don’t let that deter you from expressing your interest or asking tough questions. This career fair offers a unique opportunity to get the potential employer to match who you are as a person with how you present yourself on paper. Be memorable, talk to as many people as you can, engage with people, and use this as a networking event.

We’ll see you at the Job Fair Wed, March 20th 2-5pm 4th Floor Davis Center.

Read Career Services FAQ’s and Preparation and Tips before you go.

Learn more about Careers with Logic Supply

Savvy Seniors: Networking Advice from a Recent Grad

Trisha Hlastawa

Trisha Hlastawa, ’12,  graduated with a degree in Community Entrepreneurship and Public Communication. She currently works at Healthy Living in South Burlington as a Customer Service Supervisor and Community Outreach team member.

What role has networking played in your career exploration and job search?

Networking has played a key role. I found out about a job at Healthy Living from a Career Counselor who knew my interests. I got the job and have worked in many different positions at the store since. Previous to this position, I used networking as a way to find jobs as needed.

Networking can be a bit intimidating to some, what’s been your experience?

I have found networking to be intimidating when I don’t know anything about the person I am interacting with. The key thing is to find something to talk about that is familiar to the person and myself and that we can both relate to. Once a conversation is sparked, it can lead in many different directions. Overall, networking has been rewarding to me. As many people say, it is a small world. The more people I meet, I find people who know people I know and vice versa. We are all ultimately connected in some way.

How do you recommend students get started with networking?

I recommend students start networking with people they know. Express interest in meeting new people to your relatives or friends; this can spark their interest in helping you to make more connections. It’s also really important to put yourself out there and get involved in on-campus activities or part-time jobs. Sometimes you just have to take chances and see what happens.  Establishing relationships with people who know what you are interested in and want to see you succeed can make a big difference when you are looking for a job.

For more information on Networking see the Career Services website.

Also, don’t miss this great workshop!

Savvy Seniors: Networking Workshop Wed. Nov 28th, 4:15pm, L&L E-166

World of Work: Deanna Cameron ’91, Ronald MacDonald House Charities

Deanna CameronDeanna Cameron ‘91
Program Coordinator
Ronald MacDonald House Charities – http://www.rmh-vermont.org/
Burlington, VT
Major: Social Work

What motivates you to go to work everyday?

I’ve always been someone who needs to really believe in the cause that I’m working for, so that personal connection to the cause is a huge motivation for me. My niece and nephew were born prematurely and Ronald McDonald House was there for my sister-in-law during the three weeks that the babies were in the hospital. I saw first-hand how the support of Ronald McDonald House Charities strengthens families at a very difficult time.

How would you describe what you do on a typical day?

My typical day consists of the following:

  • Our number one priority at Ronald McDonald House Charities is the comfort of our guests. So each day starts out with a house “check-in” in which we review our current guests, any new guests checking in, and address any guests needs.
  • I also manage the nearly 200 active volunteers who cover eight shifts daily in our programs. A large part of my job is ensuring that each of these invaluable volunteers has a meaningful experience serving our organization. I set up month-long volunteer schedules for both the House and in the Ronald McDonald Family Room located at Vermont Children’s Hospital at Fletcher Allen Health Care.
  • The second half of my job is fundraising. Depending on the time of year, I may be planning our next fundraising event. I update the agency’s day-to-day communications and social media to keep our supporters up to date on what we’re doing. I also do community outreach to share our cause and needs. And from time to time, I even get to snuggle a beautiful baby who is staying with us.

Tell us about your path to this position.

I definitely could not have imagined where my degree in social work would take me when I graduated. Early in my career my work was oriented toward direct service, doing case management with a variety of populations such as emotionally disabled teen girls and homeless/marginally housed individuals. From these experiences, I moved onto doing some program development in the housing field, which sparked my interest in this type of work.

The mix of direct service work with clients and managing the operations of service programs has proven to be the perfect combination of challenges to suit my skill set. I have been able to expand on this even more in my last two positions where I’ve also become involved in fundraising–both working with donors and on events.

What advice do you have for students searching for jobs or internships in your field?

Volunteerism is a great way to take your career in different directions as well as a means to network with a new circle of colleagues. In the non-profit world where every penny is accounted for, new projects are often started solely with volunteer efforts. As greater value and need is placed on these new projects, staffing can be added to the budget and those that volunteered may then be considered for the new paid position(s). I wouldn’t advise students to volunteer with the goal of acquiring a paid position, but as a way to enhance their talents and explore an interest that may not be fulfilled in other ways.

Networking for Beginners

Networking Event

Why should I network? How should I network? How should I prepare for a networking event? If you are currently battling with the job- or internship-search process, it is probable that you have asked yourself at least one of these questions.

Being a student, I find it difficult to prepare for networking events. Without a general push in the right direction, it could be tough to find the motivation to network, so I asked and answered the following questions to get started:

Why should I network?

Networking is a great way to build connections and opportunities. With the job market being as competitive as it is, general career and industry-specific advice from professionals can make all the difference.

How should I network?

  1. Identify opportunities to grow your network such as UVM’s Vermont Career Networking Night, the Vermont Young Professionals, or other networking events.
  2. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are great ways of social networking as well.  Research and follow your preferred employer to keep updated on new trends and events.
  3. On LinkedIn, join professional groups or alumni groups such as University of Vermont Career Connection and University of Vermont Alumni.

How should I prepare for a networking event?

  1. Research the networkers. Look them up on LinkedIn to learn about their career paths.
  2. Research the companies represented at the event.
  3. Come prepared with questions for the networkers.
  4. Make business cards or build your resume. Both of these are great ways to get noticed.

This should get you started!

~Randall, Career Peer Advisor