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Eight People You’ll Meet at the Career Fair

Since Fall Career Days begin today, Penn Staters are in full-on panic job hunting mode. Over the next three days, thousands will flock to the BJC in hopes of speaking to their dream companies — or, well, whoever will take their résumés. If you’re one of those thousands running toward the White Loop in a blazer, here are a few of the people you’re likely to encounter at the career fair this week.

1. The Unprepared 

We’ll begin with the majority at any given career fair. From something small like forgetting to look up the companies they want to meet, to something bigger like not bringing along a résumés, hundreds of students will arrive at the career fair unprepared. Some common excuses for arriving unprepared include a fear of leaving school and getting a real job, attending the career fair just to get credit for a class, being an underclassman who simply doesn’t know how to prepare for anything yet, or, “Yesterday was Monday! I know I should have looked up companies, but, come on, I’m not not going to go out on a Monday!”

2. The Overly Prepared 

The perfect foil for the Unprepared, the Overly Prepared probably spent the past week doing nothing but looking up companies, fine-tuning their résumés, and practicing their elevator pitch. They write CVs and cover letters for employers that don’t know what CVs are and jobs that don’t require cover letters. While they often blend in well, they can usually be identified by the determined, dialed-in look on their faces, as if they will do anything to get to their No. 1 company, including running straight through you. They may also have paper cuts from printing and giving out entirely too many résumés.

3. The Underdressed 

This one’s pretty self-explanatory. Maybe they were never told what to wear. Maybe they assumed business casual would be okay. Maybe they thought their costumes from that “CEOs and Corporate Hoes” party would work just fine. Most likely though, they are just unprepared first-timers. They can usually be spotted with a look of terror on their faces standing in the middle of all the booths on the BJC floor like deer in headlights. Sad, scared, underdressed little deer. It looks as though there is a constant battle going on in their heads between sucking it up and trying to talk to some recruiters, and just going back to their rooms and changing/crying.

4. The Arrogant 

Walking with just a bit too much “swag,” these people have smug smiles on their faces that scream, “Yeah, I look good in a suit. Everyone wants to hire my major, what of it? Come at me, bro.” You can often overhear them saying phrases like, “Yeah, pretty impressive, right?” or, “I’m looking at a lot of places, but I’ll definitely consider you.” They assume every company wants needs to hire them, and they expect nothing less than the highest pay possible for an entry-level position (or internship).

5. The Mix-and-Matcher

This is that guy on your floor who asks you for a belt, your roommate for a tie, someone else for dress shoes, and his own roommate for a suit. Very likely under-dressed in the past and trying his damnedest not to relive that experience. Normally nobody will notice, but you’ll wait anxiously, hoping to get that belt back one day.

6. The Terrified (also known as The Wanderer) 

You’ve seen this person five or six times so far, but he never seems to be talking to any recruiters. In fact, he just seems to be walking around aimlessly. In terror. Despite looking perfectly prepared and well-dressed, he will just walk and walk, and try to keep his head down in fear of a recruiter actually talking to him. He just needs to find a company to feel comfortable with before he starts talking. Maybe that one — no, OK, not that one. Definitely the next one though. So close, Wanderer. You’ll get there eventually.

7. The Sweaty  

Oh, sweaty people, what would this world be without you? You’re either super nervous, overheated under the fluorescent lights of the BJC, or just generally a really fucking sweaty person. Maybe you mistakenly forgot to apply deodorant, or forgot to wear an undershirt, but whatever is happening, you’re damp. And yes, we can tell. While this is normally a guy, it can happen to girls, too — although it’s very uncommon. Bonus points for not wearing a suit jacket. Or, even better, sweating all the way through it.

8. The Freshmen 

Freshmen at career fairs come in many shapes and sizes, from unprepared to underdressed, and even one or two overly prepared. Almost all of them are there to get credit for a class, be it a first-year seminar or otherwise, and they’re easily identifiable by the fact that they rarely talk to recruiters for more than 15 seconds after hearing the words, “Sorry, we don’t take freshmen.” It’s okay, freshmen, you’ll get ’em next year.

Who did we miss? Let us know in the comments.

About the Author

Mike Reisman

is a senior Supply Chain Management major with an Economics minor (Read: Business Douche) from South Jersey. He has an intense fear of graduating so please don't bring it up. He writes about stupid things nobody cares about, and student life if the site is low on content that is clearly supposed be funny but is really very unfunny. He is lovingly (?) known around the staff as Baby Mike which may or may not be because he has a child (hint: it’s not). He’s also a second generation Penn Stater who has been wearing Penn State sweatshirts since before he was two, a habit he hasn’t grown out of. If you really hate yourself, you can follow him on twitter at @mike_reisman or email him at [email protected]

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