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MIT student blogger Kevin S. '19

Tales of my first Career Fair by Kevin S. '19

Among other things, shirts for the next 33 days

D-3: I need a resume?!
I have a busy week ahead–an 18.02 pset due the same day as the dreaded first 8.01 exam in addition to a 3.091 quiz, and an 18.02 exam on Friday. In the midst of spending the day studying and pseting, I get an email reminding me to sign up for Career Fair and print out my badge before Friday.

Career Fair runs from 10-4pm. I check my calendar. I have class from 10-12 and then the 18.02 exam from 2-3. I have a three-hour time frame in which I can grab and eat lunch, study for the exam, and/or go to Career Fair. “Is it worth?” I ask upperclassmen. “OF COURSE IT IS! GO FOR THE FREE SWAG,” they all encourage me.

So I register online and the second step of the registration tells me to upload a resume. I only have a clumsily put-together resume that I used when applying to colleges. I pull up the PDF and take a look. “Figure skater since age 6…taught learn-to-skate classes…I like to read and take pictures.” Not quite the resume I was looking for. I message my brother, a senior at UC Berkeley, and ask for help. As I wait for him to respond, I procrastinate on making a new resume by getting back to psetting. Productive procrastination?

Oh and I also need some fancy clothes. I didn’t bring a suit or dress shoes from home.


D-2: 8.01 exam tomorrow, ugh
My brother sends me a copy of his resume and suggests I “add anything and everything relevant.” OK. Well I don’t have any business or management experience, nor do I have any Course 6 experience aside from AP CompSci. Fantastic. I start filling in my education section: MIT Class of 2019 – Candidate for B.S. in Management and/or Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and/or some other major that I don’t know I want to major in yet. I realize I don’t know what I want to do in life. Great.

So I start filling out work experience. Oh, I’m a blogger! I finally have something to put down. I also worked as a bookkeeper back in high school for a local law office, and taught learn-to-skate classes. Not the most related to Course 15 or 6, but at least I have some more things to put down. My resume is still half blank. So I start making another column to fill in awards and honors. I find that all I can think of are skating-related. Great. This is going to be the worst resume ever.

I spend the rest of the night cramming for 8.01 and 3.091. By 2am, I call it quits. Still no sign of a completed resume. Nor do I have fancy shmancy stuff to wear.


D-1: 3.09UGH, 8.0UGH
When was 3.091 and 8.01 ever considered to be 3.09FUN and 8.0FUN? I come out of both knowing I totally bombed them. “P/NR” (Pass/No Record), upperclassmen remind me. I’d be more than thrilled if I managed to pass. The 8.01 midterm ends at 9:30pm, and I go grab some late-night at Masseh and I see a line for people registering for Career Fair. I run back to Burton Conner, and format the rest of my resume with pretty fonts and colors. I go to the printer and realize it’s only black and white. Welp. I print out 20 copies of my resume anyways, probably more than I need, and get back to studying for 18.02 and making a note sheet that I can use on the test.

At around midnight, I realize I need to somehow put together a fancy outfit for tomorrow. I dig out my suitcase under my bed and pull out a dress shirt, black pants, and a belt. I don’t have a suit jacket, so I grab a decently-fancy sweater to go on top of the dress shirt. I don’t have fancy shoes, so I plan on wearing a pair of chukkas and hope no one looks down at my shoes.

Back to studying for 18.02.


D-0: 18.0UGH, but Career Fair!
Uh oh. It’s 11am. I oversleep and miss a recitation. Oops.

I decide to go to Career Fair early. The line’s short! I walk into the Johnson Arena, not knowing what to expect and see an entire room filled with people and booths. It’s overwhelming. I meet up with a friend and we start passing through the booths strategically, from one end to another. Free t-shirts! Water bottles! Headphones, pencils, pens! More shirts! Shirts, shirts, and more shirts! Stickers, too! Lots of ’em.

I talk to a few of the representatives, and I find out that most are MIT alumni. They went here, got a job, and want to hire more MIT grads! I learn some really cool things about what they did while at MIT, and what they do now. Most companies aren’t interested in hiring freshman for internships, so I carry on to the next booths. I drop off my resume at some of the smaller companies that ask for one.

My friend and I stumble upon the Dropbox booth, and we look for the coveted Dropbox shirts. None to be found. Noooooo. Apparently, they had a limited number and they ran out in about 30 minutes. Sad face. When we finish passing through the rest of the booths, we find that there are two additional floors with even more companies and booths and free swag. So we trek on and see what the other companies have to offer. More shirts! More water bottles! More stickers!

I look at my watch and it’s time to take the 18.02 test. I haven’t even eaten lunch, but I find some chips and a banana to snack on and call it a day. I drop off all the twenty-or-so pounds of swag I collected in the 2-hour time frame. It’s time to do some math.

Math is hard. It’s a 50 minute test, which went by a lot quicker than the 2-hour 8.01 exam. I run back to career fair to try to talk to the companies that I missed earlier. I get even more shirts, stickers, pamphlets, and other swag. I stop by the Facebook, Google, and Apple booths which were the hotspots during the fair and learn that there are freshman internships at Facebook and Google. Maybe there’s a chance I can get an internship over the summer so I have an excuse to go back home to the Bay Area and also have an internship doing really cool things? I don’t set my hopes too high. Alas, my resume is… well… let’s not go there again.

4pm: Career Fair is officially over. I’m exhausted. I walk back to my room and sort out all the free swag I’ve collected.

Let’s see: in total, I got 33 shirts, a handful of stickers, water bottles, and a lot of other random swag. Time to tack on a bunch of stickers all over my laptop! Getting pumped about wearing a Career Fair shirt every day for the next 33 days!  Yay for new water bottles!


My lovely badge showing the wear and tear of 2-3 hours of career-fair-ing.


More stickers than I can fit on my laptop.


More free swag. Notable: $5 Amazon and Starbucks gift cards! 


All the shirts folded together. So. Many. Shirts. 


I don’t even have enough closet space for the shirts–so I guess they’ll stay here for the time being.