Teacher Job Fairs

Teacher job fairs are an exciting opportunity to meet with numerous school districts within a region at one time. Rather than sending out dozens of resumes and visiting countless websites, a teacher job fair allows you to link up with multiple decision makers on an individual basis. This reduces the amount of time spent looking for employment, while increasing the likelihood of finding the right teaching position. Job fairs are truly a win-win situation. To get the most out of a teacher job fair you should arrive prepared.

Preparation is the key to success at job fairs. You will be competing against numerous qualified teaching candidates. In order to make a lasting impression and outshine the other applicants, you should take the time to prepare for on the spot interviews. A few simple steps can set you apart from the rest of the teaching candidates.

The most important element of job fair preparation is dressing the part. A professional appearance helps the decision maker picture you in the available role. Although a large part is proper clothing, you should also ensure that shoes are clean and polished. Your hair should be neatly combed and conservatively styled. Makeup is best, when used in moderation; the same is true for any fragrances you might wear.

Large book bags and purses can make you appear flustered, as well as unorganized. It is best to keep items, such as these, at home or in a car. Instead, choose an attractive binder with plenty of paper, along with a pen or pencil for filling out applications. In addition, you should have several copies of your college transcripts, resumes, and cover letters. Having your resume or cover letter professionally written is the best option; if this is not feasible, make sure you get an honest opinion of its contents prior to the job fair.

Prior to the teacher job fair, do some research about the school districts that will be represented. This knowledge will show interviewers that you are genuinely interested in working within their school system. Before the event, you should practice responding to questions that are typically asked during teacher interviews. Have answers ready for inquiries about your strengths, weaknesses, and why you want to teach in the district. You should also be prepared to articulate what makes you the best teaching candidate.

Once you arrive at the job fair, take a few moments to map out your plan of attack. Determine the districts that are the most appealing to you. Then schedule interviews with the selections at the top of your list first. If you run out of time later in the day, the most desirable districts will not be affected. This simple step will help you avoid disappointments at the end of the day.

When you begin an interview at the job fair, introduce yourself with enthusiasm and confidence. While you are doing this, look the individual in the eye and extend a firm handshake. A word of caution here, a firm handshake doesn’t mean you must cause bodily harm. Simply keep your hand stiff and gently squeeze. Follow up the introduction with information regarding your past teaching experience, education, and the alternative certification program you are currently enrolled in.

Once the introductions are over, state the teaching position you are applying for and provide a copy of your resume/cover letter. During the interview process, maintain eye contact and answer questions with confidence, but remember to be personable. Remember that even at a job fair, you are still selling yourself. The only difference is you are directly competing with other applicants. At the conclusion, thank the individual for their time and tell them that you look forward to hearing from them. Following these simple guidelines will ensure your next job fair experience is a success.