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Career Event- Morgan Moubayed

2017 April 10
by moubayed

For my career event, rather than going to the Careers Fair, I attended a workshop called the Networking Workshop held by the Career Center by Chelsea Moore. The main reason I attended this session was that because I am President of the American Advertising Federation for the UofM chapter, I arrange and host several events that have to do with potential career opportunities or anything to help the members benefit from a career event or workshop to educate them on what is needed for the real world. Thus, I contacted the Career Center and they host and partner with UM clubs to organize events for groups of students. Chelsea and I had continuous conversations about what event would be most beneficial, and decided a networking event would be best. So on the day of the event, there were about 15 members that attended this session held by Chelsea who held a great informative and interactive Networking workshop.

The purpose going into this session was to develop an understanding of networking and its importance, examine personal and potential networks that I have in order to connect with professionals, identify ways to expand my network from what it currently is, and lastly understand what to do for an information interview to help you network. Chelsea first explained what networking really was and it was to build relationships, ask good questions, and find commonalties. She mainly focused on building relationships and how it can benefit us as young professionals entering the work force. Something interesting that I had never thought about, that Chelsea informed us about is how there is a web of network contacts that we should be looking to, some including professors, advisors, organizations you may be involved in, sports organizations, friends, family etc. Those were just a few on the web she presented of a couple dozen of potential connections to look to.  In the middle of the session, Chelsea had us do an exercise where each member at the session had to make a personal quadrant including family, friends, alumni and supervisors/ faculty as each section, and think of as many members for each community in these sections that could potentially be networking connections to look to in the future. This really helped me as I had never thought of some of these people like professors that I was close with whom I could speak with for potential opportunities to build relationships with. In addition, I thought of some family members who I had never thought about contacting for their input that could be helpful in the industry I want to go into. Even so, if the person cannot directly help you find a job, Chelsea made it clear that building a relationship and networking is not all personal and shouldn’t only be for your benefit, but should be to gain insights into potential industries or interests, and just to get to know the person better to see if there are commonalities that you could connect on, and maybe you could even end up benefit the person you are networking with. It should be a mutual benefit for both people partaking in the networking, as you never know what the future may hold where you contact them for guidance or they may contact you for insights.              Chelsea then proceeded by explaining potential ways to expand your network. She gave some ideas including attending lectures and conferences in your field, get involved with professional organizations, informational interviews, attend a career immersion (career fairs), get on mailing lists, attend information sessions, volunteer/ job shadow and lastly, use online professional networks such as the UM Alumni LinkedIn page.  Finally, the best piece of advice was to maintain the relationships by keeping up with the connections once you’ve made them. You never want to just drop in with the person when YOU need them, rather keep up with it frequently and check in, whether its online through social media or email, or stop in to meet in person.

 

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