What’s your plan for re-engaging upper-level students and interesting new students in career services this academic year? If you’re looking for some fresh ideas, complete with planning tasks and promotional ideas, keep reading!
In no specific order, here are 11 suggestions to implement as is or get your creative gears turning.
Stump the “Band”
Bring a panel of your most experienced career services team members to answer student questions about career preparation, job searches, networking, interviewing, and internships.
Identify panel members, confirm the date, choose a location, and encourage students to come with the hard questions to “stump the band.”
Invite student influencers to a practice round where they record Q&A exchanges for social media and website posts. Position the event as students vs. career services with prizes for the winning group.
Digital Scavenger Hunt
Transform exploring your career services website into a “clickventure” where students to meet your staff and discover your services, professional resources, and upcoming events.
Identify parts of your website you want students to see and write rhyming clues or post a basic checklist to guide their “clickventure.” Consider offering prizes like spirit wear or gift cards to popular campus restaurants. College kids love free food!
Tease the event with a few sample clues and prize pictures to pique their interest on social media and in emails.
Campus-wide Scavenger Hunt
If you prefer real-life adventure to the online kind, write clues that lead students to the various departments and resources that help them build attention-grabbing resumes. Think clubs, honors societies, volunteer groups, etc.
Map out key campus locations, coordinate with campus security and facilities, and give participants an easy-to-use guide.
Engage student influencers and place catchy flyers around campus.
Career-themed Escape Room
Put mystery, fun, and learning - all in one room. Build temporary escape rooms based on career themes like business, marketing, accounting, healthcare, social work, etc.
Choose a career theme and develop engaging puzzles for a suitable space.
Share a fun teaser video and send email invites with sneak peeks.
Career Board Game
Grab some cardstock, markers, or a couple of art majors, and design a board game about typical steps along various career paths. Invite some computer science students to put it online for you.
Develop the game rules, playing pieces, and test as you go. Consider modeling it after existing games, but watch the copyrights!
Share behind-the-scenes game development on social media and host a pre-launch beta test group to build buzz.
Career-themed Film Festival (or viewing list)
Movies with a message! Use films to highlight various careers, work environments, or work-related challenges. Hidden Figures, The Intern, Legally Blonde, Good Will Hunting, Dead Poets Society, The Devil Wears Prada, 9-5, and Glengarry Glen Ross showcase how leadership, decision-making, risk-taking, and company culture impact careers.
Curate a film list, coordinate with facilities for a viewing room, and get snacks!
Post trailers on social media, email “tickets,” and posters around campus showcasing those snacks.
Get the campus airwaves buzzing with professional stories about career paths and how your department prepares students to access these opportunities. Invite recruiters attending upcoming career fairs and alumni employees from these same companies. Ask upper-level students to advise first- and second-year students about optimizing career services resources.
Identify and invite guests, script each episode, especially if it’s a Q&A format, and test your recording equipment.
Stir curiosity with audio snippets and showcase guests, especially students. Consider creating a point system to claim prizes after students answer surveys confirming they heard the podcasts.
Spotlight Email Campaign
Humanize your career services team with cameo appearances on the website or in email campaigns showcasing how they interact with students, hobbies, personal stories about their job searches, cringe-worthy interviews, rewarding experiences, hobbies, favorite college memories, or pet pictures.
Coordinate with staff to gather personal info, draft engaging emails, and schedule the campaign.
Post on the career services home page and share on social media.
Career Services “Speed Dating”
Staff and students have five minutes to introduce themselves to each other and find out how that team member supports career prep and facilitates job searches.
Choose a date, find a room, line up tables, and set a five-minute timer on someone’s cell phone.
Launch a countdown series on social media, challenging students to prepare questions for career services staff and how they want to present themselves.
Juniors and Seniors Only
Here are three ideas for your older students who are likely more anxious about landing that post-graduation job.
Job Search Accountability Group
Establish a supportive community for students navigating the job search process, with regular meetings for sharing, motivating, and accountability.
Define group structure, identify a facilitator, and organize a meeting schedule.
Invite students via email and promote in classes and student clubs.
Targeted Job Search Networking Events
Bring students and potential employers together based on majors.
Confirm participating employers, book a room, and invite students to pre-event coaching sessions.
Spotlight participating employers on social media and send students personalized email invites.
Job Search Newsletter
Distribute a newsletter tightly focused on job opportunities, career resources, and job-searching tips as a dynamic, one-stop guide for upper-level students.
Establish a student/staff editorial team to design a user-friendly template and develop content.
Offer a sign-up incentive and send email invites with a newsletter preview.
Prove to students that your career services are more than resume workshops and mock interviews. Show them creative thinking, team building, and productivity with engaging experiences that inspire students on their career journeys.
When it’s time to bring it all together in a career fair or hiring event, the innovative features of Career Fair Plus make everything easier for you. It’s worth a 15-minute call to discover how Check-in & Analytics, Resume Drop, 1:1 Meetings, and unlimited support get you closer to your team’s recruiting goals.