We are excited that you have chosen to recruit at Carleton College. Here are some answers to some commonly asked questions, as well as tips for a successful event.

Tabling

You will be tabling in the Sayles-Hill Campus Center. This building is the hub of campus life which houses the snack bar, bookstore, game room, TV lounge, post office, campus radio station KRLX, and much more. It is a great place to strike up informal conversations with students as they pass by during lunch and between classes.

To capture the attention of students:

  • Display a banner and/or tablecloth that has images, brief text describing your organization and its mission, and the title of the program or positions you are recruiting for (similar to what you see at a job fair). 
  • Provide printed material that students can take with them to read more information about your organization, program/position, and whom to contact for follow-up.
  • Have individually-packaged swag (food, candy, highlighters, thumb drives, etc.) that students can grab while they are browsing.
  • Consider bringing an activity with you that will encourage student interaction.
  • Look engaging and excited to talk with students. If you are standing, make eye contact with the students as they walk by. If you are sitting at the table, look up frequently so they know you are open to talking.

Information Sessions & Skill-Building Sessions

Topics to cover

Information sessions are a great opportunity to share information about your organization/school (mission, culture, values, uniqueness, position within the industry, etc.), your experiences with your organization/school (what’s great about it?), the kinds of opportunities available at your organization/school and what a “day in the life of” might look like, and how those opportunities will support students’ long-term goals for their career and professional development (e.g., mentorship programs, professional development resources, what folks have gone on to do after this opportunity). We also encourage you to cover topics students might be afraid to ask about:

  • Money: Is it a paid position and what are expected pay ranges? Is there financial aid available in this program? Do you cover relocation expenses?
  • Recruitment tips: What does the application process and recruiting timeline look like? What makes for a successful application? What kinds of interviews should I prepare for?
  • Best impressions: Does taking a gap year reflect poorly? Does your organization welcome more creative résumés or should I keep it basic/traditional?
  • Flexibility: Are there options for a lateral move at your organization? Are flexible hours/scheduling, hybrid work, and remote work possibilities?

Skill-building sessions are a great opportunity to teach our students a skill that is important for their success in your field (e.g., industry knowledge) and/or for recruiting in your field (e.g., tips for acing the technical interview). Not only does this develop the next generation of leaders in your field, but it contributes to long-term relationship building with our students.

It is always helpful for students to know who is the best person(s) to contact for follow-up questions.

Delivery

Compelling content is a fantastic start. Delivering that content in a way that connects with our students may involve:

  • Keeping it short and to the point. Recent research suggests students are highly interested in 15 minute sessions, though we are happy to support 30-60 minute sessions as well.
  • A focus on “what’s in it for them (the students)?” with special attention to the ways a liberal arts student might receive this information.
  • Visual aids such as a slide deck with photos, timelines, and other elements that are best communicated visually.
  • Materials that have been thoroughly proofread and presentations/talks that have been rehearsed – everything counts for communicating your organization’s values and potential.
  • Audience engagement: Ask a question to our student audience to give them an opportunity to do more than just listen, or consider an activity you can incorporate that enhances students’ understanding of your organization/the role/the task.
  • Leaving time for Q&A and signaling to students at the beginning of the session whether you would like questions during or after your presentation/talk/activity.

The Career Center’s Program Director for Employer Relations, Jamila Siddiqui, is eager to support your development of an effective session for Carleton students. Reach out anytime Jamila can be of assistance.

1:1 Sessions

Students may come to a one-on-one session with you with a wide variety of interests and questions. Some questions might include:

  • Why would someone consider a career in your industry or with your organization?
  • What is it like to work in your industry and/or in your organization? Pros/cons?
  • What kinds of jobs are available in this field? What are typical career paths/trajectories?
  • How can I stand out as an applicant?
  • Does my résumé meet expectations for your field? How can I improve it?
  • What is your recruiting timeline?
  • What general career advice would you give an aspiring ____?
  • What is something you wish you had known or done while you were in college?
  • What is something you did during college that added to your career success?

Some students will be set on a career path in your field/industry and eager to build connections with your organization. Others will be in more of a “discovery stage” of their career development—one that has more uncertainty but also open-mindedness. Connecting with these early-stage career explorers sets the stage for a deepened relationship with them in the future once they narrow their focus.

Both kinds of students may benefit from you asking them open-ended questions such as:

  • Tell me about yourself.
  • What are your career goals?
  • How can I help you?
  • What questions do you have for me about this field/industry?
  • What would you like to know about my organization?
  • What are some career decisions you are weighing right now?
  • What qualities are you looking for in an internship/job?

Connect with recruiting@carleton.edu to discuss ways to approach your 1:1 sessions that suit both your goals and the students’ goals in these opportunities for connection.