Virtual career fairs on Handshake give you the opportunity to meet recruiters and other employers through one-on-one video chats and group sessions. We love Handshake fairs because it allows you to schedule chats with recruiters rather than waiting in line. Keep in mind that employers that attend virtual career fairs often rely on viewing online student profiles as much as chatting with students to help them find top candidates for their jobs and internships. If you are attending a virtual Handshake fair, make sure to follow the steps below to make the most of the virtual fair.
Not familiar with Handshake? Check out our Handshake Basics!
Types of Virtual Sessions
Virtual Handshake fairs allow you sign up to meet with recruiters during specific time slots. This means no waiting and securing your spot to meet with the employers you’re interested in. There are two types of virtual fair sessions.
During these 30-minute sessions you’ll join other students to listen to recruiters and other employees from the organization. You’ll learn about job and internship opportunities, company culture and more. You’ll also have an opportunity to ask your own questions.
This is an opportunity to chat directly with a recruiter or employee ambassador about jobs and internships through video chat. Recruiters that want to meet you will be able to invite you to attend virtual sessions with them, or you can sign up for sessions that have availability. Some employers may set up criteria for their one-on-one sessions that you must meet in order to schedule a one-on-one session.
- Log in: Log in to your Handshake account with your UT EID. Next, navigate to the career fair page by clicking the button at the top of this page or clicking on “Events” from your Handshake homepage as well.
- Find out which employers are attending: View the virtual fair details page to see the full list of employers who are attending and hosting sessions. From there, you can click through to each employer’s Handshake page to learn more about them and read reviews from other students. Follow employers if you would like to stay updated about their latest activities!
- Register: Registration for virtual Handshake fairs usually open one week before the date of the fair. Click the button in the top right corner of the Fair page. If you don’t have access to the career fair you are interested in, get the details here or email us for help. A popup will appear on your screen with information for you to review. Click “Register” on this popup when you’re ready to proceed.
- Sign up for sessions: Click the name of the session you’d like to sign up for. Read about them below to know what to expect.
Signing up for Group Sessions
- Group sessions will have a custom title and indicate a length of 30 minutes.
- Review the information, and if you’d like to proceed, click “Confirm” to sign up.
- If a Group Session is at capacity, it won’t appear in the list any longer.
- To participate in group sessions students will need to set their profile visibility to “Community.”
Signing up for One-to-One Sessions
- One-on-one sessions are indicated by “One-on-One with EMPLOYER NAME.”
- Each session is 10 minutes in length. Be mindful of how many sessions you schedule back-to-back.
- You can choose which representative to attend a one-on-one session with if multiples are listed.
- The red dot to the right of a session start time indicates that you are currently signed up for a session during that time. In order to sign up for this session, you’d need to cancel the existing session sign-up.
- To participate in one-on-one sessions, you will need to set your profile visibility to “Employers” or “Community.”
Managing and Cancelling Session RSVPS
As you sign up for sessions, a list of sessions will populate on the right side of your screen in Handshake. Click on the name of a session to see more information about the session or cancel your reservation.
You can also click on the tab for Your Sessions in the upper-left of the fair’s page to see a list of sessions. Click on “RSVP-ed” to see more information about the session or cancel your reservation.
If you’re no longer able to attend the career fair and have already registered, you may unregister on the event home page in Handshake by clicking the same button you initially used to register. All of your sessions will be canceled.
Tip: Don’t forget to add the sessions you sign up for to your calendar and set a reminder.
Preparing for the Virtual Career Fair
You signed up for sessions with employers during a Virtual Handshake Fair. What comes next? There are a few extra steps you need to take to get the most out of your virtual fair experience on Handshake.
Update your Handshake profile: CNS does not automatically complete your profile. Employers may set student requirements (GPA, job types, major, school year, etc.) for their one-on-one sessions. If fields are blank on your profile and required by an employer, sessions won’t appear on your scheduling options when registering. The more complete your profile is, the more likely you are to make meaningful employer connections. We strongly recommend you make sure your Handshake profile is at least 80% complete so you are able to connect with employers that are the best fit for you.
Check that the basics are accurate: graduation date, school year, major, GPA and work authorization.
Select the job types, locations and roles that interest you, so recruiters know which jobs and internships are a good fit for you.
Add your courses, skills, and any previous work experience.
Upload your resume and make it "public" so employers can view it. This isn't automatic when you upload your resume.
Se your profile privacy settings to "employer" or "community" so that employers can view your resume.
Reference our Handshake Basics for more details about Handshake and setting up your profile.
- Make sure your tech is ready: A significant component of being prepared for virtual career fairs is making sure your technology is ready to go. Plan a dry run the day before the virtual career fair to avoid last-minute surprises.
- Run a network test of your internet, visual and audio at networktest.twilio.com.
- Use Chrome or Firefox as your browser for the fair.
- Choose your device wisely to avoid a shaky camera and use earbuds for clear audio.
- Set your preferences to give the web browser access to your mic, video and screen. If you don’t do this, certain elements of the fair won’t work.
- Follow employers: View the virtual fair details page in Handshake to see the full list of employers who are attending and hosting sessions and follow the ones you are interested. You will be notified if new sessions open up.
- Check schedule frequently: Employers’ schedules will change and new employers may be added all the way up to the day of the fair. We suggest you check back frequently for cancellations, changes and additions to the schedule.
- Review the Handshake guide for joining sessions: Familiarize yourself with the process of joining virtual fair meetings to make sure there are no surprises for you or for the interviewer at the time of the session.
- Back-to-back scheduling: Handshake does not have a timer mechanism in meetings. If you’ve scheduled back to back one-on-one sessions, you must monitor the time to ensure you maintain your schedule. We suggest you begin one-on-one sessions by introducing yourself and then informing the employer that you have another session scheduled immediately following: “Good morning, I’m Vera and I’m pleased to meet you. I did want to let you know that I have another session immediately following our meeting.”
Not sure what to say to an employer? Check out our guide:
Frequently Asked Questions
Will the career fair be accessible?
Color contrast, keyboard-only support and screen reader support are all available on Handshake. Close captioning is supported on the Handshake IOS app.
Should you require ASL interpreter services OR live captioning and do not have access to an IOS device, please contact email@example.com at least 2 weeks before the fair.
Where can I find which employers are coming?
Employers participating in the virtual fair are listed on the Fair homepage in Handshake.
Can I join while I’m in another country?
International students and students physically located in other countries (i.e. study abroad) are able to participate as long as the student has logged into Handshake. There are no restrictions by location.
Can I see previously attended sessions?
Students will be able to see their previous sessions within the sessions tab.
How do I share my resume?
Follow an employer and/or sign up for a session with an employer. They will automatically have access to your resume.
PRO-TIP: Make sure to mark your resume as “public” and your profile as “employer” or “community” so that employers can view your resume. When you upload a resume, it isn’t automatically set to public. Go to your documents section, click on the radio dial, and then set the resume to public.
How long do I have to sign up for sessions?
You’ll be able to sign up for available one-on-one sessions up to one minute before the start time. Once the session has started, you’ll be unable to sign up for the session. However, you can join group sessions even after they have started.
Who can attend the fair?
All UT Austin current students and alumni who have an active Handshake account and complete profile are eligible to attend the career fair.
Why don’t I see any open one-on-one sessions for an employer I am interested in meeting?
All of the employers sessions are full, OR, your profile information does not meet requirements as set by the employer. Employers can set criteria for one-on-one sessions to ensure they are connecting with students who best match their company’s needs. If your criteria does not match an employer’s requirements, or if you have an incomplete profile with no information in fields the employer is requiring, any available sessions will not show up on your scheduling options.
Will I be able to submit my resume to employers?
You must sign up to meet with employers in one-on-one and/or group sessions during a virtual fair. The employers will have access to these students’ resumes before and after the fair. There’s no way to directly submit a resume to an employer, other than signing up for a session or applying to a job posting they have on Handshake.
What if I have technical issues during the fair?
While virtual career fairs make it extremely easy for students and employers to join in from anywhere in the world, they come with their own set of issues (mostly technical). Keep reading to be aware of what to do if you come across any (fingers crossed you won’t!). We always have a Zoom room link on the homepage of the virtual fair in Handshake that you can join for help.
You can also use this checklist to solve many of the video issues you might experience:
- Make sure that you have a reliable Internet connection.
- Make sure you have given your browser access to your camera and audio.
- Twilio provides a network test to test internet, audio, visual, etc.: https://networktest.twilio.com/
- Make sure that you are using a supported browser: Chrome, Firefox or Safari provide the best experience.
- Minimize the number of resources (i.e. close unused tabs and applications) on the computers/devices when using video.
- Move closer to your router.
- Confirm that your speakers and volume control both work.
- Test the sound and microphone by using another platform or application through your device.
- Confirm that your device can play video. Test this by watching a video on YouTube.
- Confirm that you’ve granted permission on your browser or app for both audio and video.
- Refresh the page on your browser on desktop or mobile.
- Restart the browser, or close the app and reopen.
- Try a different supported browser.
- Restart your computer or device.
How do I report a technical issue?
If you’ve gone through the checklist above and your problem is not resolved, you may report an issue during a one-on-one or group session. In Handshake, click on the “Settings” button and then select “Report a Problem.”
Once reported, your problem will be directed to the Handshake team for review and follow up. Please be aware, Handshake Support can fix Handshake products; however, they won’t be able to assist with non-Handshake areas (internet connection, device, browser, camera, mic).
We always have a Zoom room link on the homepage of the virtual fair in Handshake that you can join for help as well.
How do I report an employer/user misconduct OR trust and safety issues?
Participants can report any user or message (including the host) for fraudulent, spam or other inappropriate activity. To report a participant, right click on their name in the participants list, then select Report User. The user won’t be alerted that they have been reported.
When a user is reported in a group session, the session host will receive a notification, and hosts can decide whether to remove the participant from the meeting.
During one-on-one sessions, issues may be reported by clicking on the “report” button available on all video calls. The report is then routed to Handshake’s Trust and Safety Support team in real time.