2009 Dice Career Fair in Seattle

Fun fact: Last month I was laid off from my job at a startup, along with about half the company. Now, I’ve been sending out resumes and interviewing, and although I’ve never been to a career fair before, I figured I might as well go just in case. Why not, right? Well, I’ll tell you why not.

The thing ran from 11 AM to 3 PM, and I got there around 10:45 only to see a very long line forming. The line stretched longer and longer leading up to 11; at least 100 people were there when it opened.

As we slowly shuffled up to the registration table, I came to the realization that there were a grand total of four companies at this so-called “career fair”. FOUR. In the e-mail about the event, they had a list of companies but I thought it was a representative sample—not the entire list.

Isn’t there some agreed-upon or understood minimum number of participating companies for these things? When the entire career fair could fit inside a hotel room, as opposed to a ballroom, I think it’s time to call it quits.

The utterly depressing thing is that almost every candidate there was a middle-aged man in a suit. These are guys that have families to feed, all competing over what amounts to scraps… the desperation was pretty palpable.

Anyway, I just left.

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One comment

  1. Same story in Minneapolis yesterday. I arrived at noon hoping to avoid the lines which was probably a good idea. The woman at the registration table had a stack of over 100 preregistration forms so I can only imagine that there was quite a line at 11am. The roster was mostly a list of web/db contract firms looking for bodies. What really surprised me though was the USPS booth, although being a federal entity the wages were fixed far below what I could be comfortable with. Luckily I still have a job, so I’ll just keep waiting…

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