Striking right for the career expo

Students and presenter at the LinkedIn Professional Development station.
Photo by Tracy Noze

Florida A&M University’s Career and Professional Development Center with sponsorship from Chevron hosted its “Strike Right” Career Expo Prep Day in the Grand Ballroom on Wednesday.

The expo was one of the first events that allow students of all majors to prepare for the university’s Career and Internship Expo on Jan. 29.

Students received a “Rattler Career Guide” booklet to assist them when it came to exploring their strengths, preparing for career and internship fairs, and certain topics that were also professional development stations at the expo.

The event was especially beneficial to freshmen like Chelsea LaFrance.

“The career center provides useful resources for us as students to be successful. Some things we don’t learn in the classroom and I think products like the one provided to us are beneficial,” LaFrance said.

The professional development stations included resume tips, interviewing skills, LinkedIn and networking, employer research, professional attire, and 30-second elevator pitch. These stations took place in 20-minute increments and were presented by a range of employers and FAMU faculty and staff.

Although there were many stations, the resume tips, interviewing skills, and LinkedIn professional development stations were heavily populated.

Assistant director of FAMU’s Career and Professional Development Center, Maire Smallwood, believes in giving students a choice at events like the expo.

“This event is preparing students through a variety of topics that are going to help them. This event is a well-rounded way to get them prepared because students get to choose,” Smallwood said.

Students had one-on-one resume critiques with employers. They gained insight into things they should include in their resumes that’ll make them stand out.

Evens Orinvil, a recent graduate, emphasizes why resume critiquing is important.

“Having a professional look over my resume so that I have the proper wording and format helps me know what adjustments I need to make,” Orinvil stated.

At the LinkedIn professional development station, students learned the world of online networking. Orinvil shared his takeaways when it comes to being active on the platform.

“One of the things I’ll be implementing is making sure my LinkedIn is up to date with proper information,” Orinvil said.

At the interviewing skills professional development station, students were given a realistic perspective on interviewing. Students were engaged by asking questions, receiving advice on preparation, and standing out.

LaFrance revealed how this event will improve her interviewing skills.

“Typically, I am confident in what I am prepared to say but I lack execution,” LaFrance stated. LaFrance continued saying “this event helps with improving my interviewing skills so that I become natural and confident in the things I say and how I execute.”

FAMU’s vision statement is to provide students with an educational experience that allows them to compete in the 21st-century global economy.

Smallwood emphasizes that events like this “help students understand what’s here locally and globally so when students graduate this is ingrained in them.”

As FAMU’s Career and Internship Expo approaches, students of all majors are encouraged to participate in the events that are coming up in preparation for the fair.

For information on events and other preparation opportunities, visit the campus Career Center.