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Dr. David Tirpak of Counseling and Career Services Gives Tips for a Successful Fall Job Fair

Dave Tirpak

On, Friday, November 8, 2019, Howard Community College (HCC), in cooperation with the Howard County Chamber of Commerce, will host the annual Fall Job Fair from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the newly renovated Burrill Galleria. With more than 80 local companies in attendance, all students at HCC would benefit from attending! To help prepare, we asked Dr. David Tirpak, associate director of Career Services at HCC, his top tips to make attending the job fair a success.

1. Dress Professionally and Come Early

Data from our most recent employer surveys indicate that they want to see students professionally dressed at our job fairs. Set yourself apart by dressing professionally. Our job fairs are typically most crowded between 11 a.m. to 1 pm. Come as soon as the job fair opens at 10 a.m. and be among the first students to connect with employers!

2. Be Prepared to Talk About Yourself

Practice your “30 second commercial” to make a strong first impression. Focus on your strengths and accomplishments and how you can add value to an organization. Be sure to include your name, your area of study, and most importantly, mention your future goal or the type of position that you are seeking.

3. Bring Your Resume

Not all employers will accept resumes at the event. However, it is helpful to have plenty of copies in the event that they want a copy of your resume. Make an appointment by stopping by the Rouse Company Foundation Student Services Hall (RCF), room 302 or by calling 443-518-1340 prior to the job fair with Counseling & Career Services to have your resume professionally reviewed by a career services professional.

4. Do Your Homework

Investigate the employers beforehand. Learn about their history, leadership team, core services, and recent news associated with the organization. A full list of participating employers can be found at

5. Have Questions Ready

Ask thoughtful, open-ended questions that will make it clear that you are interested in THIS job and THIS company specifically.

6. Follow-Up

Send a thank you card or email after the job fair to reiterate your interest and appreciation for a recruiter’s time and consideration.

Topics: Career Focus
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