I'm not a big fan of job fairs. The giant cattle call, the smell of desperation heavy in the air.
But then again, that might just be because the last of these events I attended had the unfortunate coincidence of occurring the week after 500+ local jobs were cut from the pharma industry. It's hard to feel good about the situation when you're wading in with 50+ year old heads of families. And even harder when the recruiters focus on you instead of them. And you're not actually looking for a job....
But alas, I digress.
Yesterday, I decided it was time to brave the masses and try and get a little more info about industry jobs. At a job fair.
It actually was a fairly good (although exhausting) experience, possibly because my expectations were so low. I actually got several good leads and recruiters opened up (far more than I expected) once I told them my experience (I have an actual post-graduate degree, unlike most of the undergrads around me) and that I was NOT looking for an immediate position.
They actually seemed relieved that I was looking for something a year out. The cynic in me says they were just happy that they didn't have to do the hard sell, but I honestly think they were excited to see someone who was proactive in their potential job search. And many gave me (relatively) personal emails and told me to keep in touch.
Not exactly what I was expecting, but a good experience none the less.
And now I have to take the time to send out my email flurry (of thank yous) and update my bookmarks (career pages for various companies). Yes it's a pain, but not all that bad in the big picture, especially since I got a few local leads that I had never even thought to pursue.
And I can sleep somewhat more secure, knowing that plan F (or is it G now) is in motion.
Hell or high water, I will have a job next year....