Can you believe the time has come? Here you are, a graduate, ready to walk across that stage. As you prepare for travel and all the weekend festivities, we invite you to the Commencement Career Fair on Saturday, June 8, 2024, from 9 a.m. MST - 1:00 p.m. MST at the Renaissance Hotel. Hosted by UAGC Career Services, the Career Fair is open to UAGC graduates and local Arizona UAGC alumni who are invited to connect with employers actively recruiting for career opportunities nationwide. This event is happening in tandem with the Saturday Graduation Celebration activities, so swing by the Career Fair to explore the next steps in your journey.

As you prepare to head out to Commencement, here are the answers to nine commonly asked questions to help you get ready for the UAGC Commencement Career Fair.

What is a Career Fair, and What Can I Expect from the UAGC Graduation Career Fair?

A career fair is an opportunity for graduates and alumni to meet one-on-one with potential employers, network with industry professionals, and discuss career opportunities. The UAGC Career Fair will be no different. UAGC graduates and alumni will have a chance to meet several employers from across the country and locally who are actively recruiting for open career opportunities. The companies UAGC Career Services is bringing to this event are excited to celebrate with our graduates, share about their companies, answer any questions, and meet your families! They understand the career fair is just one of the many events you will attend at the Graduation Celebration, so they welcome the time you have to meet them and learn more about their organization.

What separates a career fair from a job fair is the opportunity to connect not only with employers but also with others who can support you in your next step after graduation. At the UAGC Commencement Career Fair, you will also have the opportunity to chat with the CHAMPS Peer Mentoring Program team, Enrollment Services, and Alumni Services to find out how to stay connected with the UAGC community after graduation. Learn how you can give back to your UAGC community by being a CHAMPS peer mentor or how to get involved in UAGC Connect and network with fellow UAGC alumni. Also, connect with the Career Services team to learn more about lifetime access to career support and resources. Meet with enrollment to explore continuing your education at UAGC.

UAGC Career Services will have a table to share about the lifetime services you will continue as a UAGC alum and upcoming virtual career events. Before you leave the career fair, make sure you swing by the headshot photographer to take a professional photo for your LinkedIn page!

What should I bring with me to the Career Fair?

Before you head to Glendale, be sure to update your resume and bring several copies to hand out to different employers at the event. If you do not have an updated copy of your resume, check out our guide on Building and Optimizing a Modern Resume for guidance on the modern components of a resume, how to optimize your resume, and sample resumes to get you started. There will also be several government employers at the Commencement Career Fair. If you are interested in a job with a federal agency, their resume expectations are different. Check out our Resume and Cover Letters for Federal Jobs resource to prepare your documents for those roles. If you already have a resume but would like tips on optimizing it for the UAGC Commencement Career Fair, email it to [email protected] to request a review of the document by one of the Career Advisors.

Watch this video to learn more.

Next, make sure your Handshake profile is up to date, and download the Handshake app to your mobile device! At the Commencement Career Fair, each employer table will have a QR code for you to scan and share your Handshake information with them. Make sure your Handshake profile is set to public so you can share your experience, education, skills, and contact information with recruiters. This will allow recruiters to follow up with you after the event. To create or update your Handshake profile, log into Handshake through your Student Portal. For tips on completing your profile with the aim of attracting hiring managers and corporate recruiters, check out this video.

Who will be at the Commencement Career Fair?

Approximately 20 local and national organizations representing government, public, and private sectors will be in attendance to talk to you about their current career openings. This is your opportunity to learn more about various industries and top employers. Come prepared to the career fair with the attitude to learn more and some great questions to ask the recruiters. Keep your options open! You may be surprised to discover you are interested in an industry or an organization you have never considered. Log into Handshake through your Student Portal to register for the Career Fair.

Need help logging in? Follow the steps here.

What Do I Need to Know Before Attending the Career Fair?

Some of the best advice we can offer for any career event — whether an in-person or virtual career fair or employer information session — is to research the companies in advance. Log into Handshake through your Student Portal and register for the University of Arizona Global Campus Commencement Career Fair 2024 to check out the employers attending, information about their organization, and the job titles they are currently recruiting for. New employers register weekly, so keep checking Handshake for updates on the career fair. While the career fair is a great way to learn about these organizations, researching in advance will allow you to ask deeper questions and get better information from the recruiters you speak to. Also, showing a recruiter you've done your research really helps you stand out in the crowd!

How Can I Stand Out at the Career Fair?

When it comes to making a strong impression, there are three important things to do: prepare an elevator pitch, ask great questions, and be confident!

Prepare your 30-second introduction, commonly known as an elevator pitch. This is your opportunity to summarize your accomplishments and career passions in 30 seconds. Check out this “elevator pitch” resource and video to start preparing now. Practice your pitch out loud with a family member or friend to keep it short and succinct.

Asking employers thoughtful questions at a career fair can help you make a lasting impression while at the same time allow you to gain valuable insight into their organization and career opportunities. Show an employer that you took the time to research their organization and have a genuine interest in their opportunities while also highlighting your critical thinking skills. While trying to stand out to employers is important, deciding if this is the right industry, organization, and career is just as important. So, ask those questions to dig deeper and learn more. Since you already did your research on the company location and open jobs, here are some sample questions to ask:

  • What sets your company apart from other industry competitors?
  • How does the company support employees with setting and achieving their career goals?
  • How does the company adapt and stay ahead of industry trends?
  • Can you walk me through the hiring process for the (insert job title) position? 
  • How does the company promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace?

What is the best way to follow up with you after this event?

Check out the UAGC Networking Tips and Tricks resource for more helpful advice on connecting with recruiters at the event.

Finally, be confident! This is your time to shine and share about your newly earned degree and the many soft and hard skills you attained.

What Can I Expect After the Career Fair?

As you meet recruiters at the career fair, ask for a business card and the best way to contact them after the event. As soon as you get home from the commencement weekend festivities, send a thank you note to each person you meet after the fair. Personalize each follow-up email, letting them know you enjoyed meeting them and mentioning something you discussed. Take it further by following the recruiter and the organization on LinkedIn and Handshake. Check out the Networking Tips and Tricks resource for a sample thank you note to get you started.

What if I am not currently looking for a new job?

If you are not in the market for a new job, great! We still encourage you to stop by to get connected and network with UAGC faculty, staff, and other graduates. You can also chat with CHAMPS Peer Mentors, Enrollment Services, and Alumni Services to find out how to stay connected and supported during this next chapter of your life. Also, if your company is hiring, have them email [email protected] for more information on how to hire more amazing UAGC graduates.

What Else Should I Know About the Commencement Career Fair?

Register in advance to let us know you plan on stopping by the Commencement Career Fair and also to begin learning about the employers at the event.

This event is exclusive to UAGC graduates and alumni. Therefore, we encourage you to register in advance by logging into Handshake and following the steps below:

  • Log into the Global Campus Student Portal*
  • Scroll down to the Career and Alumni Services section on the homepage
  • Click the Handshake link
  • Once in Handshake, select Events
  • Register for the University of Arizona Global Campus Commencement Career Fair 2024 event.

If you have any technical difficulties registering for the Commencement Career Fair, email [email protected].

We know you will have your family and friends with you at the commencement celebration events, and we welcome them to join you as you explore the career fair! Typically, we encourage you to dress to impress at any career fair. However, our employers understand that you are here celebrating with your family and friends and will be attending other celebration activities throughout the day. Business casual and comfortable attire is recommended for the Commencement Career Fair.

What If I Cannot Attend the Career Fair?

You will be missed! However, don't forget you have lifetime access to career support and resources as a UAGC alum. This includes all future employer information sessions, virtual events, and the upcoming virtual career fair on Wednesday, October 16, 2024. To register for upcoming virtual events, log into Handshake through your Student Portal. For any questions about the Commencement Career Fair or future Career Services' virtual programming, email us at [email protected].

Congratulations, graduates! We are excited to celebrate this major milestone with you and can’t wait to see you at the Commencement Career Fair!


Written by Rebecca Davis, UAGC Career Services Manager

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