Students seeking an internship, summer job or full-time employment had the chance to polish their presentation skills at the Engineering and Sciences Job Fair at the University of Wyoming in February.
It represented an opportunity to speak with potential employers and hand out resumes. Carie Raddatz, senior recruiter for Rocky Mountain Power, offered some helpful advice to students joining the workforce soon.
- Be confident: Students seeking a position, regardless of what it is, should project confidence in their abilities and behavior. Good eye contact, a firm handshake and a smile go a long way in determining how interested you seem and thus, how much interest you’ll receive.
- Show some flexibility: When you are hired into a company, it’s likely you’ll be tasked with various projects and responsibilities. Highlighting your flexibility and ability to balance work load is a great way to make a connection with a potential employer.
- Ask, don’t assume: As a young professional just joining the ranks, know that it’s OK to admit you don’t know everything. In these instances, the best thing you can do to learn more about an unfamiliar topic is research and ask questions. The worst thing? Jumping into a situation with no plan and hoping you'll just figure it out.
- Motivation is key: Present yourself as a self-starter and someone who wants to go to work. These employees tend to go further in companies than those who need constant supervision or motivation.
- Getting along: Learning how to interact with people is crucial, because odds are that’s going to be a key part of any job. Be sure of yourself and communicate clearly with others, which will improve the team dynamic present at many places of work.
Raddatz has been attending UW job fairs for 10 years, traveling to about 15 per year in Utah, Idaho and Wyoming. The ranks of RMP are stocked with UW graduates and she has a theory as to why.
“It’s a strong engineering school,” she says. “Their graduates come eager and hungry for work, and not just for the paycheck. They use the skills they gained in school to use right away and they are ready. They have the willingness to live anywhere and get the job done.”