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For many, being crammed into a hall or conference area for a few hours literally stinks. Overcrowded, overstimulating - it’s a battle in there.
To survive, you need to think like an adventurer (aka a LARPer). For those who don’t know, LARP is the acronym for Live Action Role Playing. The hobby involves having a classic ‘adventurer’ role to play (Warrior, Wizard, Cleric, Rogue - the list goes on). The collective noun for these players is LARPer.
LARPers pursue goals within a fictional setting represented by the real world for the purpose of:
LARPers are a diverse crowd of people. They enter the experience with incredible focus and motivation. The goal is to level up by building experience points.
So how does this fit a career expo, evenly remotely?
Your goal is to get face-to-face time and receive more feedback than:
“Check out our website for more information”
Before going to the expo, take some time to think about the type of career you want to have. What are your interests? What would you love to do every day? What special talents do you have that could be applied to this career? THEN think about the study options that might suit. Ask yourself: "What skills do I need to learn in the next 6 to 24 months to tick all the boxes for a role at this company or business?”
Just like a LARPer needs to know how much gold they have in their purse, think about the economics of studying. Do you really want a student loan for the rest of your life? Ask representatives for an average cost to study (X) and weigh these up against your goals. Perhaps you might save money studying closer to home living with family or friends?
Make sure you talk to a stallholder for at least five minutes before asking for free stuff! But once you’ve established a connection, don’t let any provider tell you they’ve run out of lollies or free pens. There are always more under the table.
Ask providers the deeper questions. How many graduates got a job after study? What are some of the names of companies that hired them? You need facts like these in order to set your expectations so grill them...but remember to smile.
Make sure you’re clear about the entry requirements well ahead of applying. You don’t want to be caught out by unexpected criteria you didn’t prepare for at secondary school.
Build your character, check. Enter the Mystic Realm, check. Claim your kingdom, check. Congrats, you just survived your first career expo.