Engineering Career Network Event – Are you Ready?
Tips for making the most of your limited time with the alumni
Friday, February 27, 3:30 – 5:00 p.m., Hunt Formal Living Room
Suggestions for Networking Events:
- Look at who is coming (so far) in the online information before you go or in the handout (with additional information) that will be given out at the event. By reviewing this information, you can get a sense of which alumni you want to be sure to visit, particularly if you have limited time. You can also prepare by checking out the companies online so that you are better prepared to ask insightful questions about how their organizations truly operate.
- Sometimes the information and/or personal relationship you develop with the alum is just as valuable as the opportunity. You may think the internship or full time job lead that the alum or organization has is the most important piece of information you can learn in an interaction. If you take a step back, and look at the benefits you can get by seeking information or developing a relationship, you will see how much more valuable that might be.
For instance, if you talk to the alum about what they do day to day and how their time at Bucknell benefited them, you will know how to better target your cover letter, resume and interview to succeed in your search. You can learn more about the company culture, job market and hiring practices in that company or industry – for example, are employee referrals important, is there a certain dress code, are there recommendations of various professional websites for current industry news and openings, does the company value “working from the bottom up” or is open to more majors than you you may have realized. This is your opportunity to ASK ANYTHING you wanted to know from kind alumni.
- Visit the special career tables – interviewing, graduate school, resume & cover letters, job search tips. Back by popular demand! Alumni will staff round discussion tables in the center of the room. Students can sit down and ask the alums for feedback, advice, and suggestions about these three areas. BRING YOUR RESUME and they can give you feedback.
- Don’t start the conversation by asking what jobs or internships they have. Get to know the alum a little before asking if there are any job opportunities. They may provide other valuable career planning information to consider. Show them how much you respect the time and energy they have spent visiting campus and participating in this event by looking for more than just the opportunities (see the second bullet above for ideas). The information about possible jobs and internships will probably come later in the conversation if it makes sense. They are interested in getting to know you as a student and fellow Bucknellian. We suggest you return the kind gesture!
Major = What? Be open. Your major doesn’t have to predetermine what you do. At the event, you may meet ChEs that are in defense data management, EEs that are in the biomedical industry, MEs that are attorneys, and CEs that are management consultants, as well as the more predictable career paths. Explore something you hadn’t thought of before and realize the breadth, the skills, and opportunities your major provides. Check out the stickers, color coded by engineering major, on the participants’ signs which indicate all the different majors hired by the companies.