10 steps (and an app!) to help you on your career path

appStep 1

Go to the App or Play store and search for “Ball State Career Fair.” You should find something like the picture on the left. 

Step 2

Download the “Ball State Cardinal Career Fair Plus” app.

The home screen will look like this.img_6698

Step 3

Open the app and click on “Employers.”

Step 4

In the top right corner, click on “Filters.”

Step 5

Click on “Skills” and select those we emphasize in English:

  • Critical Thinking & Problem Solving
  • Oral & Written Communication
  • Teamwork & Collaboration

There are other skills to choose, too, depending on who you are.

Then click on “Done” in the top left corner of your screen.

You should get about 169 results. That means that almost every single employer at the Career Fair wants the skills you have.

Step 6

Now, start drilling down a bit.

img_6696Click on one of the first results, ACES, a marketing firm in Carmel, IN.

They’re looking for “All Majors.”

This is a good sign for English majors, because it means this company is more interested in skills than majors.

Maybe click over to their website. Maybe favorite this one and come back later.

img_6697Let’s try a different one.

Scroll down to “Allegient.” Hmmmm. What’s that?

Looks like they’re looking specifically for majors in computer technology, information systems, etc.

So: probably not a good fit for an English major unless you have a minor or double major in that field.

Repeat as necessary.

Step 7

Use “Career Fair 101” for tips about how to prepare.

Step 8

Use “Events” to learn about two upcoming info sessions to help you prepare.

  • Monday, Sept. 12 from 5-6 PM in the Schwartz Digital Complex in Bracken Library
  • Wednesday, Sept 14 from 10-11 AM in Worthen Arena, Gate 3

Step 9 

Work on your “Elevator Pitch.”

You’ll want to say this: 

As an English major, I developed the skill of writing research papers about villains in the plays of Shakespeare and the gothic imagination of Faulkner, which, yeah, I’m sure will come in mighty handy in this marketing position.

Ugh.

Say something like this instead:

My senior seminar project was a 25-page research paper on [insert topic], from which I learned how to independently manage large projects, appreciate diverse cultures, analyze and synthesize information, and form an original idea. I’m a great writer, and I’d like to use my skills to help your company tell its story. 

This flyer has a lot of other great tips, too.

And this flyer lists lots of transferable skills that English majors possess. You can use it to write an elevator pitch that speaks to your exact strengths.

Step 10

The last step’s the hardest.

Just do it. Put on some nice clothes and go to Worthen Arena. If you’re nervous, tell yourself that you’re going to learn what might be the right fit for you–and what might be a bad fit.  

The Cardinal Job Fair is this Wednesday, September 14 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in Worthen Arena.

You can rock it, #bsuenglish. You really can.

Even if you don’t go to Worthen, download the app and start finding some stars to steer by. There will be another Cardinal Job Fair in Spring 2017!

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