Skip to main content
Profile image of Haebin

Haebin Pan

SFU Alumni
Arts + Social Sciences › English
Career and Volunteer Services
SFU Career + Volunteer Services
Career Peer

A flyer advertising the West Coast Virtual Fair
Now running for the 3rd time, the West Coast Virtual Fair has continued to attract thousands of students and hundreds of exhibitors to share hiring info, and promote jobs, volunteer, and graduate school openings.
Register Now!

Don't miss the upcoming West Coast Virtual Fairs 2021, presented to you jointly by SFU, UBC and UVIC. All students are welcome to join us in this virtual event to connect. 

For more info such as lists of exhibitors and resources on how to prepare for the fair, please visit our website at Login September 27th to pre-book sessions and plan to attend our prep day October 4th. 

SIGN UP NOW! More info here at the SFU Career and Volunteer Services website.

Interview with Jocelyn Loi, Employer Relations Manager, SFU Career and Volunteer Services

In early 2020, SFU students, faculty, and staff members faced an unprecedented situation as all classes and services became remote, physical gatherings were banned, and people struggled to adjust. Job-seeking students and alumni faced barriers to events and fairs they relied on each year for opportunities.  

Despite this new reality, Jocelyn Loi, the Employer Relations Manager at the SFU Career and Volunteer Services (CVS) set out to create another possibility: a career fair, virtual version. Jocelyn was hearing from employers who wanted to connect with students, and was motivated to give SFU students hope. Approaching colleagues at UBC and UVic, they formed a partnership, got organized, and attracted hundreds of exhibitors to the first virtual fair.

Now running for the 3rd time, the West Coast Virtual Fair has continued to attract thousands of students and hundreds of exhibitors to share hiring info, and promote jobs, volunteer, and graduate school openings. Students and alumni have loved meeting and discovering career possibilities, while exhibitors have enjoyed meeting potential new hires. 

The success of these fairs would not be possible without Jocelyn and her team. Here’s more about her experience, and how to get involved in the upcoming fair (October 4-7, 2021). 

Interview by Career and Volunteer Services [CVS] Career Peer, Haebin Pan. 

A portrait of Jocelyn Loi on a mountain.
Courtesy of Jocelyn Loi.
Career and Volunteer Services: How did you get to plan a virtual job fair?

Jocelyn Loi: In early 2020, when I heard the university was locking down, I realized we may not be getting an in-person job fair. I connected with my colleague Albert Fung to discuss ways to offer hope to job seekers with the possibility of something virtual. I also wanted to collaborate with different institutions to get more exhibitors and working power, and a wonderful committee was formed across UBC (Vancouver and Okanagan) and UVic. This amazing collaboration helped the virtual job fair to get an awesome start.

CVS: What were some wins? What were some challenges?

JL: It was easy to collaborate with other institutions, working as a team with the shared goal to instill a sense of hope in our students. Finding the right software program was another story. We wanted one that fit our purpose and met the university’s privacy parameters. Research, hard work, and communication with the privacy office eventually led us to a great platform that was easy to use. 

Another great bonus was that exhibitors shared information online like hiring practices and skills in demand. Once students signed up, then could have access to research about organizations before meeting them (which gave them an edge) and could then visit that online portal again after the fair, which is so helpful as they continue their career journeys. This will be the same for this year’s fair – once you register, you have access

CVS: What are the plans for fairs in the future?

JL: Every year, exhibitors used to gather in SFU’s AQ Hall. Now we are virtual until the university gives permission to bring back in-person events. A hybrid model for job fairs could work well in the future, too. We have seen more diversity in exhibitors than in the past, since online can be more flexible for time commitments, budgets and funding. Plus, 50% of students indicated they prefer a virtual fair over an in-person event. We’ll see if that changes after our fall fair. 

CVS: What do students need to know about how to prepare for the job market?

JL: This has been a stressful time for a lot of people, especially for young people, with the lack of certainty. Networking is one of the best ways to find out about career pathways, and the pandemic has limited us. Students and new grads might think of different ways to reach out to employers or for volunteer options, such as attending our upcoming fair and student prep day, checking out our workshops on strategic work search, and signing up for info sessions at CVS

The economy and the ways we are working are changing. Remote work opportunities are increasing, employers are hiring again, and we have attracted more exhibitors to this fall fair than ever before! 

Lastly, I encourage students to be kind to yourself, and reach out to your network of support. If you aren’t progressing as quickly as you’d like, SFU staff are willing and here to help you get where you want to be! 

Beyond the Blog

  • Check out Julia’s blog article on attending the West Coast Virtual Fair and another blog article on her reflection after attending the West Coast Virtual Fair. 


Profile image of Haebin

Haebin Pan

SFU Alumni
Arts + Social Sciences › English
Career and Volunteer Services
SFU Career + Volunteer Services
Career Peer

Haebin Pan graduated from SFU English with a specialty in learning and development. She had many volunteer roles at SFU while studying and working, such as Career Peer, facilitator and blogger. She loves journaling, podcasts and trying new recipes.
Connect with Haebin on LinkedIn

visibility  257
Sep 24, 2021

Posts by Author

A woman lying on her back in a field with roses and a phone next to her.
How to be Mindful

Are you feeling frazzled? Do you have a lot of fatigue or forgetfulness? It may be time to take action and bring yourself back to balance with a self-care tool like mindfulness. 

Government Canada
Highlights from the “Preparing for a Government of Canada Interview” Webinar

How do you prepare for an interview at the Government of Canada? Haebin summarizes for you the key points from a webinar hosted by Angela Foraaunet, a Human Resources Advisor in the Public Service Commission of Canada. Read on to learn more about Ms. Forraunet’s golden advice on acing the interviews and aiming for success.

Smiling student connecting with others
Career Peer Experiences During COVID-19: A Wonderful Opportunity

Who are SFU’s Career Peers? What was it like to be onboarded and trained remotely? What are they up to on the (virtual) campus this semester? Sharon Gill, a Career Peer at Career & Volunteer Services at SFU, tells us all.

You Might Like These... Life Balance, Mental Health, Work + Volunteer

A graphic of several hands of different colours reaching upwards. Each hand contains a heart-shaped hole.
How Hungry is Your Soul Today?

Need some motivation? Feeling overwhelmed by school? Read this article for inspiration!

LYNX logo
LYNX: Aboriginal Student Career & Employment Program

The LYNX Aboriginal Student Career & Employment Program provides an opportunity for Aboriginal Students from various universities in Western Canada to connect directly with potential employers.

Image of Author. She is smiling at the camera and is wearing a white shirt and black coat.
Tackling the Application Process in the Federal Public Sector

Are you in the process of applying to a federal government co-op position but are unsure of what to expect or whether you’re on the right track? Check out these tips that Christie, a fourth year Criminology co-op student, has to offer after dedicating four of her work terms to various agencies within the federal public sector.

You Might Like These... Life Experience

A cup of coffee placed on a written planner with the word "goals" next to it
Getting Out of the Dumps and Back on the Hunt in a COVID Job Market

Like most soon-to-be graduates, Keeley was looking forward kick-start her career. And what better way to do it than to start looking for industry-applicable experience? But when COVID-19 hit, plans had to change. Read on to find out how Keeley overcame a saturated job market in the middle of a pandemic. 

group of students sitting in a circle, discussing

In this week's Club of the Week, Emily takes a look at UNICEF SFU, and interviews their current President, Katie Mai. Read more to learn about UNICEF's activities on campus!

Abu standing next to a screen that says "Limitless"
Why Pursue a Career in Sales

This article is my take on why somebody would pursue a career in sales. I have never done sales in my life, and I like to take on new challenges. Therefore, it allows me to elaborate on the skills I have learned throughout my journey.