The Career Fair is Over – Now What?

The hustle and bustle of the Spring 2024 Career Fair week is quickly fading away as the booths are packed away and recruiters have left Pitt. If you took the time to attend, you have likely collected a pile of business cards, giveaways, and brochures, and may even have had an initial screening interview. Regardless, your work toward landing that internship or job begins now! Here are some steps to facilitate your search and application process.

Reflect and Organize!

  • Organize your notes and materials
  • Who stood out to you?
  • Which companies and roles were you most interested in?
  • Were there companies you regret not connecting with?

Follow up Promptly!

  • Make sure to follow up with employers/recruiters you connected with, within 24-28 hours! Do not delay. Reference something specific in your conversation so they can remember you. Start and end your email with gratitude and your continuing interest in the company.
  • You can also connect on LinkedIn by sending an email. A personalized message on LinkedIn to connect how and where you met and your interest in the company is recommended.

Research, Apply, and Practice Interviewing!

  • Dive into deeper researching the company to understand its mission, values, goals, and news.
  • Make sure that you understand the culture of the company you apply to.
  • Understand how your skills and professional aspirations align with the position and the company.
  • Read and study the job description and outline of duties – make note of keywords.
  • Make sure that your resume and cover letter are updated and catered to the specific position, and that your skills and experience align with what the company is looking for. Visit the career center for support or utilize these online resources by logging in with your Pitt credentials: for resume review, and interview practice you can utilize
  • Study different job descriptions and opportunities to understand what the world of work has to offer in your field and career interest area.
  • Practice interviewing, be patient, and persist. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, you would need to apply to 6-10 positions to receive one initial interview invitation.

Keep Building Skills and Stay Involved! 

  • Stay engaged – join professional organizations or academic clubs.
  • Attend workshops provided by the career center, your organization, your memberships, and your department.
  • Take relevant courses or study for an additional certificate that is deemed to be valuable and falls in your time and credit span.
  • Take online courses to develop additional skills.
  • Attend networking events. Check Career Central and HANDSHAKE for networking and alumni engagement events.

Reflect Again!

  • Take time to decompress, relax, and reflect on the entire process again
  • What went well, or what did you do well?
  • Where can you improve, or what can you improve on?

You may be exhausted after the career fair week, but this time after the career fair, you can shine! With intentionality and actions, being professional in following up, and pursuing the journey with a growth mindset, you are only positioning yourself for success in the process. With that, remember the career fair may be over, but your journey is only beginning. Embrace it with all you have. Be you, be authentic, and be enthusiastic and determined.

Most of all – Be Well.

Ingrid Beute – STEM Career Consultant – Pitt Career Center

By Ingrid Beute
Ingrid Beute Career Consultant, Engineering & Science & Career Champions Program Coordinator