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Standing Out with a Virtual Background on Career Fair Plus

By Career Fair Plus

Since the pandemic hit, many platforms, including our very own Career Fair Plus, have had to pivot from going with a mobile-first approach to a web-first approach. Now, it seems the whole world has transitioned to the web with Zoom, Google Meet, and a host of other video platforms. To make the transition a little more fun, many people use virtual backgrounds in their meetings as this can help kick off conversations on a light-hearted note.

Career Fair Plus has integrated the 3rd party application Whereby to host all the meetings for virtual career fairs. Whereby is a really nice, easy-to-use application that has a familiar feel if you’ve used other video platforms, but it comes with a caveat. As of now, there is no built-in way to use virtual backgrounds during a meeting.

Example of custom virtual backgroundThis posed a real problem for me, because as a student, I had created a personalized background on Canva to try and stand out in my meetings with employers. It included a brief summary of my career so far as well as a link and QR code to my LinkedIn profile.

However, I didn’t know how to apply the virtual background in Whereby. 

This is when I realized I had to get a little creative. I downloaded a 3rd-party application called ManyCam. ManyCam is a free webcam software and video switcher that allows you to enhance your video chats and create live streams on multiple platforms at the same time. It has many features but the two I utilized were the live time feature in tandem with the custom virtual background. The virtual background feature is available with the Studio Tier upgrade. 

When you download ManyCam, there’s an option on the toolbar on the right-hand side and you can select Virtual Backgrounds. You will need to have the correct subscription to access this.

ManyCam options

Then, after toggling the Virtual Background switch, you have the option of replacing your background with one of several provided images or an image saved on your computer. I simply uploaded the background that I had created using Canva. I was also able to add a widget for the time through ManyCam. This was very useful as it helped me remain cognizant of the time since the majority of the meetings I attended at the career fair were limited to 10 minutes.

If you’d like to stand out with your own virtual background, follow these steps:

  1. Create a virtual background using Canva or another similar tool, and save it to your computer.
  2. Download and open up ManyCam, and click the Virtual Background Icon from the toolbar on the right. Switch the toggle to “On” for the Virtual Background, and click Replace. Then, upload your saved background
  3. Close the browser you’re going to use (Chrome for me) and reload it
  4. Open up the Whereby link and for the Video Source, pick the one that starts with ManyCam
    Note: At this point, it’ll look like your video is flipped like in the picture below, but don't worry!
  5. Knock to join the meeting. Once you are allowed in, click on the "Settings" icon in the top right-hand side of the screen. Go to Video & Audio, and switch the toggle to off for the "Mirror Option".
    Knock view on Whereby

After following these steps, you should be good to go! Good Luck on your upcoming Career Fairs and Happy Job Hunting!

The final productThe Final Product

Tags: Career Fair, Attending Career Fairs, job fair, career fair planning, Technology, Virtual Fair, Virtual Job Fair, Virtual Career Fair, Video Interview, digital career fair, online career fair

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