Opening Doors: Engaging Alumni Across the Country
The Opening Doors Across America program is a virtual series that connects students who are still seeking internships and post-MBA jobs with alumni in key functional areas and markets.by Jessica Campbell, MBA CSEA 2023 Global Conference Co-Chair and Director, Corporate & Employer Relations, Rice University, Jones Graduate School of Business
I'm still thinking about the incredible session presented by the University of Rochester Simon Business School at the 2023 MBA CSEA Global Conference - “Opening Doors: Engaging Alumni Across the Country.” I can't wait to introduce a similar initiative at my university this spring!
Simon Business School has nailed the art of leveraging their extensive alumni network across the country in a cost-effective manner, creating structured networking opportunities for students. The best part? They've done it at a time when students feel the mounting pressure of their job search.
Their Opening Doors Across America program is a virtual series that connects students who are still seeking internships and post-MBA jobs with alumni in key functional areas and markets. To participate, students apply and, if accepted, are allotted a 15-minute slot to connect via Zoom with a panel of alumni in their area of interest, be it functionally or geographically. Simon also requires the students to go through a brief training to learn how to best optimize their time with the alumni. This additional support ensures students are well-prepared to capitalize on these invaluable networking opportunities.
The thoughtfulness and intentionality behind this program impressed me. Late-February through early-March is the perfect timing, as this period can often be filled with panic and distress for students who haven't secured their desired job or internship. Simon Business School truly understands the challenges faced by students during this time and has crafted a program that provides essential support.
The "Opening Doors Across America" program not only benefits students but also elevates alumni engagement. By involving alumni as mentors and panelists, the school strengthens the bond between past and present students, creating a thriving network that continually gives back.
I especially appreciated hearing the lessons learned and how the program has evolved. With the success of their program as inspiration, I can't wait to see the positive impact it will have at Rice Business! A heartfelt thanks to Andrew Tempest, Ariel Ruggeri, and LaTanya Johns for sharing this impactful program with us. Their dedication to student success and commitment to nurturing alumni engagement is truly commendable. Here's to building stronger connections and opening doors to brighter futures!