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Every parent wants their student to succeed, and landing a job, co-op, or internship can help begin that success. With the Spring Career Fair coming up on April 27, wouldn’t it be helpful for your student to know what campus recruiters look for when they interview college students? How do students set themselves apart from other candidates at school? How can your student stand out at a career fair and know what it takes to be selected for an offer?
We met with a recruiter from a Big-4 global consulting firm that recruits at many universities across the US. We asked him questions that are most concerning to our students and he shared his insights of what he wants to see from college candidates.
The following is an excerpt from our interview.
For privacy purposes, we will refer to this contact as CR (Campus Recruiter).
What are your general expectations of students that meet you on campus at the Career Fair or networking event?
CR: We do not expect them to fully understand our business or the role they are applying for. However, the more they know about us ahead of time, the better.
Students need to show that they have a positive attitude, they are teachable and a quick learner. We like to see students who show a willingness to team and partner with others since a lot of our work is group-based.
How many students do you meet per day at a career fair? How do you decide who moves on or not?
CR: I meet 50-100 kids each day at a Career Fair. Here is the list of qualities I look for:
If a student says “I’m interested in your company. Tell me about it”, they will not move on. That comment is too broad and vague. They have not done their homework.
When you screen for a consulting or an accounting role, do you only consider business majors?
CR: No, however, I want a candidate to connect the dots for me as to how their experience, in clubs or on their own initiative, relates to this job. Demonstrated interest in this field is highly valued. I like to see how their experiences and coursework lead them to this program at our company.
What advice would you give to students or grads?
How important is GPA? It seems that some companies won’t interview you unless you have the required GPA.
CR: Yes. GPA can play a role for the initial screening. However, my opinion is that 75% of getting the job is networking and talking to people, 25% is GPA.
What other advice would you offer to students?
One recurring theme throughout our interview with the campus recruiter was that those candidates that spent time preparing for the interaction had the most success. They stood out amongst other candidates because they did their research in advance, were personable and professional, and communicated their value to the recruiter.
He also noted that it is better to start meeting employers earlier in your college career instead of waiting until senior year. Not only do you get a chance to sharpen your networking skills, but also showing interest in the same company year after year at the career fair will get you noticed.
Author of article: Beth Hendler-Grunt. Article adapted from: grownandflown.com. Please Note: Missouri S&T does not endorse or have a relationship with SOURCE and articles are provided for information purposes only. Missouri S&T and SOURCE do not assume responsibility for error or omission in materials.
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