Attending conferences is a great way to network with employers that may not recruit on campus at ASU. Affinity conferences are specifically created to bring people together who share a commonality. For example, the National Black conference brings together students, entrepreneurs and professionals from historically underrepresented populations. There are also affinity groups for Veterans, LGBTQ students, women, Hispanic and Asian students and professionals, as well as those interested in a particular area such as sustainability.
Many companies participate in global recruiting processes throughout the fall semester. Affinity conferences are a key channel through which you can engage with firms via the recruiting activities at the conference, regardless of connection to the affinity group.
To make strong connections at these events, know your target by researching the companies you are interested in beforehand. This will allow you to develop relevant, detailed questions that demonstrate awareness of the current market and its impact on the industry. As with any networking event, it’s also important to be prepared to introduce yourself professionally with a well-polished personal narrative that is relevant to your next career goal and your audience.
As the world transitions post-pandemic, you may find that some conferences are virtual and some are in-person. As you prepare to attend, review the resources below for tips on how to make the most of both. Your Career Coach can also help you prepare for affinity conferences during a coaching appointment.