Seminars give tips on presence and etiquette

Many students may be aware from e-mails and signs around campus that  Career Fair 2010 is rapidly approaching.  On Wednesday and Thursday of last week the office of Career Services hosted two seminars on professional presence and etiquette informing students of the proper ways to be professional.

The first seminar on Wednesday was presented by career planning instructors, Lorett Swank and Krystal Hardison. After a brief introduction by director of Career Services, Ken Ridgedell, both Swank and Hardison went into their presentations.

They gave tips on how to present your self in a professional environment, tips on managing bad habits and ways to dress in a business environment.

“A person has seven to 17 seconds to make a first impression so that is vital in their approach,” said Lorett Swank, CPL instructor, and advisor in division of general studies.

“One thing you want to do is leave the employer wanting more; just keep them interested, said Hardison.

Students were also given tips on how to conduct themselves in a job interview.

“One way to keep employers interested is keep a steady conversation going,” said Swank. “

“Don’t expect the employer to entertain you, ask questions like what opportunities are available and use personal information from the conversation to help the employer remember you for future references,” said Hardison.

On Thursday, the seminar took a different angle. This seminar was given by Anna Bass, a business instructor at Southeastern and an expert on etiquette. Bass gave tips on having confidence, communication skills, posture and dining etiquette.

“All these tips are important, communication is a big part of the business world and the biggest part of communication is non-verbal and most job interviews today include a meal,” said Bass.

“They are not taking you out to make sure you are getting a good meal they are trying to see if you have good table manners because this is all part of that first impression.”

At the end of the presentation there were a few models who fashioned off the dos and don’ts of dressing in a business environment. Students were encourage while at career fair wear your badge on your right side and always wear something that you can pin it on. They were also told that jeans should not be considered, and students should strive for a conservative but confident look. The event left student very prepared as they get ready to go to career fair and get ready to embark on their corporate world.

“I learned a lot. The job market is very competitive and many of the things they informed me of can help me gain a competitive edge and really make a difference,” said Mark Williams, a junior business major.

As part of the Auxiliary Services here on campus the office of Careers Services prepares students for when they are in search of their career. They assist with résumé reviews, internships and job placement.

“We try to make the difference between rather you get offered a position or at least an interview,” said Ken Ridgedell, Director of Career Services.

For more info on Career Fair, contact Career Services at 985-549-2121 or visit




In the article “Seminars give tips on presence and etiquette” that ran in the Sept. 21 issue of The Lion’s Roar, the Office of Career Services was incorrectly identified as being part of Auxiliary Services. The Office of Career Services is part of the Division for Student Affairs.