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Career Fair: Swag Tips

It’s that time of the semester, when a bunch of recent alumni roll into town to relive the glory days and try to get you to apply for a job at their company. But before you dust off that suit and purchase overpriced resume paper from the bookstore, remember what career fairs are all about. Swag.

For the unaware, swag (reportedly) is an acronym for Stuff We All Get, but is basically all the junk that companies give out with their logo on it. If you’re in desperate need of a new drawstring bag, a 2GB thumb drive, or a few dozen cheap pens, the career fair is your place. We’ve worked up a few tips to help you score the best swag the BJC has to offer.

  1. Dress the part: Nothing sticks out more at a career fair than the kid who isn’t dressed properly. Even though you might only be in it for the swag, it won’t help your cause showing up in a Hollister tee and cargo shorts (a distinct possibility based off this weeks weather forcast). Business casual at a minimum; suits (or female equivalent) are even better. Don’t forget to print out a few resumes too, not having them is a dead giveaway that you’re not serious about the event.
  2. Be on the lookout: Now this might seem obvious, but the simplest way to score the swag you want is to be keeping an eye out for stuff. That doesn’t mean by looking solely at the booths, check out what the other attendees are carrying and what the logo is on the stuff. Head in the direction of that company.
  3. Grab a bag: A lot of people who go on swag-snagging trips fail to remember that they’re eventually going to have to put all their crap somewhere. Make sure that the first stop of your journey is to a place that is giving away bags, that way you’ll have a convenient place to dump everything. You can sort it all when you get home.
  4. Don’t be afraid: Don’t be afraid to go up to a company that you have no interest in just to grab some stuff. Heck, most recruiters won’t even care if you just walk up, grab something and bail. In the event that they initiate conversation, just go with it. They’re there to be welcoming, they don’t bite. Tell them that your unsure of how you would fit into their company. You might be surprised to find that you actually do.
  5. Have fun: Remember, even though you might initially be in it for the swag, you never know what opportunities you might stumble upon. Talk to the recruiters, see what they have to say. You never know, you might even wind up with an internship in addition to all your awesome stuff.

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About the Author

Chase Tralka

Chase Tralka is a Senior majoring in Information Sciences and Technology with a minor in Security and Risk Analysis. He is from Northern New Jersey and is involved in far too many organizations to list here. He enjoys photography, cycling, and listening to obscure free jazz music.

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