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Online Meet & Greet FAQs for students

By Ella Halstead
August 20 2020

Posted in Student Resources

Why are you moving the Auckland and Wellington Meet and Greet events online?

The pandemic resurgence and subsequent lockdown in August 2020 means that if the lockdown level is 2 or above, we are not legally allowed to hold our larger Meet & Greet events. We believe there is a high risk that the lockdown level will still be 2 or above in September.  We also believe it is irresponsible for us to hold a large scale event so soon after social distancing and the pandemic resurgence. Our board and the employers in our programme agreed with our decision – they do not want to put staff at risk at an in-person Meet & Greet event.

How do I register for the Online Meet & Greet events?

If you are eligible to attend – meaning that you have an approved profile on our platform, and you are available to work full time in a paid summer internship from approximately mid November to mid February, then you can register via our events page here. We will email you more detail about preparing and joining the event in the 2 weeks before the event.

Are there one or two Online Meet & Greet events?

Originally we thought we could fit all the employers into one Meet & Greet event, but due to restrictions on the platform and more and more employers signing up every day (yay!), we now have too many employers and jobs for one event. This means we have split the Online Meet & Greet into two events – one for Wellington and Palmerston North on the 9th September at 5-7pm, and one for Auckland and everywhere else on the 8th September at 5-7pm. You are able to attend one or both of the events, depending on where you are available to work this summer. You need to register for them on the Summer of Tech website (for the Wellington event register here, for the Auckland event register here).

What do I need to participate in the Online Meet & Greet events?

When you participate in our Online Meet & Greet you will need to have a stable internet connection, and a computer or phone with a camera and microphone so you can have video chats with employers. If you have any concerns about being able to participate in the event please let us know via email (info@summeroftech.co.nz) or direct message via the chat bubble on our website or in our Slack workspace.

You will also need to do some research and get prepared to meet and greet! More tips in the video here.

You’re letting everyone in, won’t there be too many students? 

Because we no longer have physical space restrictions, the companies will be sending more representatives, so there will be more people for students to talk to.

The number of attendees at the Online Meet & Greets will be no different to the number of attendees across the Auckland & Wellington events in 2019. 

We are VERY conscious of making the event a good experience for students and employers. We are working to the recommended ratios of students:employers for an online career fair.

Just like our in-person Meet & Greet event, we recommend you focus on your top 10 roles/companies. You may have time to prepare and talk to another 10-20 organisations, but it is NOT a good idea to try and talk to everyone. If you want to be considered a serious candidate, you need to show that you are genuinely interested in the role and the company. You need time to research and get ready to meet and greet with them. You should do some “browsing” during Meet & Greet, check out the other  booths if you are waiting in a queue, do some fast research if the company sounds interesting and if they have role(s) that look like a good fit for you. 

Video conversations are awkward/I’m really nervous about an online interview/how do I prepare for this unexpected change?

Having a remote job interview is going to be a reality for any job seeker for the foreseeable future. We will have mock interview practice events happening BEFORE Meet & Greet so you will get a chance to practice and get used to the format.

What about bootcamps, speed interviews, and other SoT events?

All remaining SoT2020 events are now going to be online. Check the Events page for details of the bootcamps, and we will send you more information about how Speed Interviews will run as soon as it becomes available.  Speed interviews are at least 1 week after Meet & Greet, but employers can contact you directly to arrange an interview any time, so be prepared for online interviews!!

How do we know which companies will be there? 

You can see the registered employers on the Organisations page of our website. You can assume that they will be at the Meet & Greet event. There may be late/last minute company sign ups. We will say “yes” to any organisation that comes to us late wanting to hire interns!! 

Will there be more jobs posted between now and Meet & Greet?

Yes, we usually get a big surge of new jobs posted in the last few weeks before M&G. Keep checking the jobs page!

What if we are at level 3 or higher in November? Will summer internships be cancelled?

That’s going to depend on the organisations and their ability to mentor & support you remotely. SoT does not usually support or endorse remote internships – we find that the mentoring relationship and support needed by most interns requires close proximity, and in the pre-2020 world, that meant in-person. 2020, however, has thrown curve balls all over the place.

Organisations all over the world are planning for all contingencies. The internships you see advertised are genuine roles. Based on our experience post-earthquakes, we know that SoT employers will do everything in their power to ensure internships can go ahead if possible.

But, this is 2020, and there is going to be a level of uncertainty in the economy. Hang in there, and please ask for help/support if you are finding the situation stressful. If you are overwhelmed, remember that the free-call or text support service at 1737 is available 24/7.

Do I need business cards or my CV or portfolio for the Online M&G?

No, you do not need business cards. Your CV and portfolio are visible on your SoT profile. Employers can go there to find out everything they need to know about you! Make sure it’s awesome! 

Will employers have access to our QR Code or some profile link during M&G? 

Yes, we may include your QR code (that links straight to your SoT profile and to our mobile app for employers)  on your online M&G profile, but they can find your SoT profile by searching for your name. Make sure the name and profile photo you use on both platforms is the same!

I’m anxious about the queuing process at the Online Meet & Greet, how will that work?

We will share a LOT more detail with you before the event. You can queue for multiple booths at once.  You will have visibility on where you are in the queue. You can browse other booths while you wait. Please don’t be anxious, we are doing our very best to ensure this is a good experience for students, bear with us while we work out the details!

How do I stand out in a crowd of 1,000+ students?

As boring as it sounds, be yourself! It will make the process a lot smoother for you and the employers. If you’re truly excited about a role don’t be afraid to show them! Employers are looking for someone who is excited, willing to learn and wanting to learn too.

We will have alumni (past interns) sharing their tips at a future bootcamp event, so jump into that one if you can!

How will the “chat” work with employers at the online Meet & Greet?

It will be up to you to join a queue for the company/job you want to chat about. There will be the option to private text chat initially, and then the employers will have the option of inviting you into a 1:1 video chat. This is likely to be 5-10 minutes long. We will share more detail about this before the event.

Will we need to write any cover letters for the Meet & Greet or Speed Interview process?

No, we will not have the “custom cover letter” option this year, we only do this for people who are unable to attend M&G.

The “About You” section of your profile acts as your cover letter for all roles in SoT. Make sure that’s covering all the things your potential employer needs to know about you!

I booked travel to attend Meet & Greet, I can’t get a refund, ARGH!

We are so sorry for the disruption and financial pain this is causing, and we’ve heard a lot of stories like this with events cancelled because of COVID/lockdown. We are sorry that the airlines are not being more flexible.

We thought long and hard about this decision, and consulted with our Board, and key Employers in our programme, realising it would disrupt a lot of people’s plans. We feel that we cannot go ahead with a large scale event even if the lockdown is back at level 1, it will be very close to lockdown restrictions, and the health and safety and anxiety for attendees had to be top of mind. Some airlines require official documentation for proof of why you need to cancel/change your flights – if you need this, contact us at info@summeroftech.co.nz and we can help you out. 

 

If we haven’t answered your question, please email us at info@summeroftech.co.nz!

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