Originally posted September 28, 2011 on Sfu.ca/olc
Today was day one of two on Burnaby campus for the BIG fair, and the name is not an exaggeration. Tables lined the halls of three sides of the AQ, presenting students with volunteer, career and further education opportunities.
This was the first year I took an active interest in any of the career fairs on campus. Sure, I had walked through them on the way to class before, maybe grabbed a few free pens, but I never really stopped to talk to anyone.
Part of the reason was because I have no desire to go to graduate school, and I seemed hopelessly unqualified for jobs at any of the companies participating. I don’t want to be an accountant, or do IT work or computer programming, or quite honestly anything that involves an abundance of math. Walking through the fair this year I spotted a whole bunch of accounting and banking firms, some insurance agencies, and some IT and engineering places I’d never even heard of.
Then there was the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, and who knows what kind of skills they look for…probably some sort of combination of kickboxing and Dan Brown style decoding skills…is there even a degree for that?
I was pretty sure that being able to write clever blog posts would not be high on their qualifications list.
Instead of being discouraged, however, I just walked myself up to some booths and started asking questions.
The CSIS probably wasn’t right for me, but the Communications Security Establishment of Canada might be (although I didn’t ask about their kickboxing requirements).
SAP focuses on software development, but they have a marketing internship. My Loud Speaker specifically hires employees with less than five years experience, Clearly Contacts has openings for email marketers.
Even Microsoft could help me out, at today‘s fair they were only recruiting for technical internships, but I introduced myself and was given a website to find marketing internships this summer.
If I wanted to brush up on some tech skills BCIT was there too, with tons of brochures on full and part time classes.
So to sum up todays lesson: Don’t be intimidated if you think the companies at a career fair have no use for you. Just ask. At the very least you’ll score yourself a free pen.