Careers fairs are ideal for students and graduates as they help to bridge the gap between education and employment.

They provide a platform for employers to introduce their businesses to some of the brightest minds in the country and hopefully find some new employees. The Association of Graduate Careers Advisory Services (AGCAS) reported that in 2016 more than 90% of careers services registered with them ran a careers fair that year. Despite the growing trend for virtual interactions, there is still a considerable demand for in-person events.

With over 130 universities in the UK, there are so many institutions holding careers fairs to help students and graduates like you. Make sure you stay updated on your university careers services by regularly checking their website or sign up for email updates. There is still some scepticism among students as to how careers fairs can help them. Here at Developing a Student, we want to show why you should attend a careers fair:

Find out where your degree subject can take you.

Many university academic subjects, such as History or English Literature, do not directly connect to a single career path, in the way subjects such as Law, or Medicine do. This means that it can be challenging for students of these degrees to know what graduate career paths they could take. At a subject or school-specific careers fair, you can meet employers who are looking for candidates with your exact skills and qualifications.

For example, suppose you attend a careers fair at your university for The School of Critical Studies. In that case, you know that all employers you meet there are interested in hiring people with your degree in Philosophy, or English etc.

Meet potential future employers

The value of making a good impression on somebody cannot be overstated; when there are so many candidates applying for a competitive job, it is often somebody who stayed after an event to have a chat who sticks in the employer’s mind. If you can introduce yourself to the people who you may eventually be applying to work with, you are in a much more advantageous position. This can be especially helpful if you don’t have much work experience, as you can show that you are an enthusiastic and hard-working person.

Learn about Postgraduate study

When leaving university, there are lots of different paths to consider; one is going into further study. Careers fairs are not solely for employment; universities and education platforms such as UCAS also hold postgraduate fairs. These fairs offer information about different master’s degrees: how to apply, the content of various courses and the style of assessment. A postgraduate fair is excellent if you need an introduction to postgraduate study and want to meet some of the academic staff who teach the courses.

There is no reason why you couldn’t attend both a careers fair and postgraduate studies fair to explore all of your options.

Find out about new and exciting job opportunities

As mentioned earlier, careers fairs are not just to help you find employment, but also to help employers find you. Many innovative companies want the best and freshest graduates to bring their enthusiasm and work-ethic straight into their business. At a careers fair, you will find out about jobs and careers that you may never have heard of, who are desperate to hire people like you. They offer the opportunity for employers to cut out the middle-man and go straight to the graduates, offering unique roles with completive employment benefits.

For more information, visit our page Completed your Undergraduate Degree, what next?