What if you let your TA Interns run your campus Career Fairs? #TC18Live

I’ve noticed something when I go onto campus for career fairs. The TA Pros that are there representing your company, don’t really want to be there. They don’t really want to be talking to students. They find this beneath them in many aspects.

That is if you’re over one year out of college! It seems like the only people who want to go on campus are your new hire recruiters. They’re super excited to go on campus! Then they get a year out and the culture beats them down and they become too ‘professional’ to talk to lame students who only want an internship, or they just want some of your swag!

Here’s what I know, when your TA interns go back to school for the year, they would love to represent you on campus to students at the fall and spring career fair! LOVE!  They would advocate for you, like your own people ever could!

What would it cost you? Like a few hours of $15/hr wage or something like that!

What would you get in return?

– “Recruiters” who love being at that career fair!

– “Recruiters” who love being at that school!

– “Recruiters” that candidates at that school would listen to!

– “Recruiters” that would do a better job than your current team!

What could go wrong?

I mean really, what would really go wrong if the interns took over a career fair? I’m guessing absolutely nothing! Oh, they might not spin bull shit as good as your internal team could spin bull shit, but on the positive side, Gen Z doesn’t really react to that style anyway!

The reality is Interns will take career fairs more seriously than your normal team. They are trying to impress you. They are trying to impress their classmates. They’ll give it their all. When was the last time you looked at your internal team and thought, “Oh boy, the team really gave it 110% on campus this season!” Never! You never thought this!

This isn’t about your team not doing well. They do fine! They’re representing you just fine. Fine. No, really, fine! The question is, do you want ‘fine’?

Sometimes the craziest ideas are the best ideas! I mean, if you have a campus that you’re just not making it happen, what do you really have to lose? Let the interns take over and they might just surprise you on how great they do. If they fail, oh well, you were sucking on that campus anyway!

4 thoughts on “What if you let your TA Interns run your campus Career Fairs? #TC18Live

  1. I see aspects of the truth in all the opinions thus far. Your ideal mix of representation at a campus event includes (not necessarily in this order): 1) an experienced campus recruiter who does like representing at such events (agreeing w/Alan) and can answer almost all the questions that students will likely ask (which is my main concern with Tim’s post — those interns won’t be able to); 2) a recent hire who works in the division that you’re targeting at the campus event. I agree w/Stephanie that such a person can answer those real-job questions in a more knowledgeable and authentic way than the campus recruiter (while it’s ideal if that hire is from the same school, if that’s not feasible, I think it’s more important that they occupy the primary type of job you’re trying to recruit for), 3) at least 1 (depending on size of event) hiring manager from the team that has the most # of openings matching the talent (much easier to progress candidate stage if they’ve already met talent) and 4) the motivated past intern from that school (as Tim espoused) who will surely provide that motivated first impression about your company and can relate to the student target from that perspective.

  2. Well I must really disagree here Tim.

    I am a very experienced TA Dir. I love going to college career fairs and many of the other company reps share my view.

    If you cannot get excited about TA, be it a senior level exec, or an entry level college student eager to learn, maybe you shouldn’t b there

  3. This is so true. But, it doesn’t just have to be your TA interns. . . At the last career fair I attended, the HR Reps were there, but they had a recent new hire, from that college with them at the booth. It was a technical company, so not only could that student answer the “technical” questions better than HR, the kid knew EVERYONE that walked past. He made instant connections and there booth was busy all day.

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