Career Fair Survival Pack: 11 Essential Items

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Career Fair Survival Pack

With every school term comes a slew of career fairs connecting employers with emerging young professionals. In preparation for the lineup, we’ve collected 11 must-have items for the recruiter’s arsenal. Come equipped with the Career Fair Survival Pack, and you’ll be prepared to hire interns and entry-level employees without the headache.

  • Don’t get lost on a foreign campus—download the university map before your arrival so that you have an idea of where the career fair will be held and how to get around. If nothing else, you’ll have the inside scoop on where to find parking!
  • When you’re facing an ever-growing queue of students bearing resumes, it’s easy to become drained. Refuel with your favorite kind of energy bars, and make sure they’re full of protein and fiber like the ones made by Clif Bar.
  • Protect your lips from chapping with lip balm. Yes To, Inc. produces theirs from organic fruits and vegetables to keep you career-fair ready all day.
  • Handling booth materials, shaking hands, and holding open doors will make you grateful you brought your hand sanitizer. Purell produces travel-size bottles that helps you kill germs on the fly.
  • What networking event would be complete without business cards? Make sure yours stand out. (Check out this collection of old business cards from the world’s most famous people!)
  • It’s a good idea to keep a company directory so that students who have specific follow-up questions can get in contact with the right person.
  • Reliable footwear is a must. For the ladies, a pair of comfy and professional flats will make all the difference. Look for something like these toe-capped loafers from Aerosole; not only will they be more accommodating than heels, but they’ll also lessen damage to your back, knees, and spine.
  • With your phone working overtime during a day of taking calls, looking up information, and setting reminders, having a cell phone charger handy will prevent it from running out of juice. Andru the Android Robot USB charger is a great travel buddy.
  • You’ll need a sturdy water bottle to quench your thirst after hours of speaking to eager applicants over the surrounding babble. We like this vacuum insulated version from Hydroflask, famed for its ability to keep ice cold water just that—ice cold.
  • Recruiters who have been chugging coffee since the A.M. might need a refresher from a pack of breath mints before entering the career fair. We enjoy these long-lasting yet pocket-sized mints from Altoids.
  • Carry a clipboard to keep track of important papers, or to have an easy writing surface for jotting down notes on student resumes. This will help you remember potential candidates, and also give you the freedom to move around the booth.

When surviving your career fair, you can also have an online presence! Click Get Started to create your account and publish an internship or job listing.


Did we miss something? Tell us what you can’t do without at a career fair in the comments below, or Tweet @IMemployers!

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Nathan Parcells

Nathan Parcells is VP of Marketing and co-founder of Looksharp. He has spent the past decade helping students launch their career, researching best practices for hiring millennials (including running Looksharp's annual "State of College Hiring") and sharing these insights with employers. Nathan's work has been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, Business Insider and more. Outside of work, Nathan is an avid rock climber, back packer and Bob Dylan fan.