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Career Fair Tips

For most the month of September means end of summer, cooler weather, and the beginning of football season.  For us at Ketel Thorstenson it means recruitment season!  Over the next few weeks we’ll be spending time on a number of college campuses looking for interns and full-time hires.

For some of you, the recruitment process starts with an on-campus career event.  While these events are great ways for you to get to know the different accounting opportunities firms offer, starting a conversation with a recruiter can be difficult.  In order to help you out, here is a simple three step process for developing a unique introductory speech.

Step 1.  Do Your Homework

The first step is to research the firms that will be at the career event. Focusing on what services the firm provides, their culture, and the recent or current events they have going on. By knowing more about the firm and what is currently happening at their offices you’ll be able to find a unique way to connect with the recruiter.  Maybe their mission statement or core values resonate with you.  Or they have an office in a city you’ve always wanted to live in.  Maybe they provide a unique service that you find interesting or want to know more about.

The information you find will help you develop a unique introductory speech that will help you stand out from the crowd.

Step 2. Review Your Resume

Step two is all about you.  This is the time to review what you want to convey to the recruiter.    The obvious information is going to be your name, what year you are in school, when you anticipate graduating, the degree you are getting, and what type of opportunity you are looking for (internship vs. full-time position).  To go beyond the obvious think about what you want to do when you are done with school, what size firm you want to work at, how working for the firm would help you get your dream job, and where you see yourself in 5 to 10 years.

By looking inward you can better understand what you are looking for thus determining the purpose of attendance the event.

Step 3. Develop Your Speech

The final step is to put the information you gathered in steps one and two into an introductory speech.  The speech shouldn’t be long, but a concise introduction of who you are and your connection to the firm.

Maybe something like “Hi, I’m Amanda.  I’m currently a senior and plan on graduating with my Bachelor’s degree in May 2019 with plans to go on to get my Master’s.  Once I have enough credits I do plan on sitting for the CPA exam and my goal is to work for a mid-sized CPA firm in the Midwest.  I was on your website and noticed the firm recently opened a new office in South Dakota; that’s got to be exciting.  I’m very interested in finding out more about what your firm is offering for internships at any of your locations; but I am very interested in an opportunity with your newest office.  Are you currently looking for interns?”

Now practice your speech until you feel comfortable with it.  Maybe ask a friend or family member to help.  Don’t forget practice makes perfect, it also can help reduce some of the nervous energy most students feel when attending a career event.  Best of luck!

Our team is getting ready to be on a college campus near year and are eager to talk with you about our internship and full-time opportunities.  For the full list of college events we’ll be at go to our website, https://ktllp.com/careers/student-careers/.  See you all soon.

Amanda Dokter

Amanda Dokter

PHR, SHRM-CP at Ketel Thorstenson, LLP
Originally from the southwest suburbs of Chicago, Amanda has spent the last 10 years working in human resources in both for-profit and not-for-profit industries.
Amanda Dokter

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