Social Environmental Business Advocates organized a panel meeting followed by a speed networking activity Monday night for students interested in building business connections, exploring different companies and pursuing career pathways centered around sustainability.
The panel meeting consisted of 11 different representatives from various companies involved with sustainability, including corporations like Kohler, Trek, Edward Jones, RP Nutrients and Alliant Energy. Students had the opportunity to participate in a Q&A to discuss intersections between the worlds of finance and environmental sustainability.
After the panel meeting, students were directed to a speed networking event, where they rotated around stations in five-minute intervals to establish connections with the individual employers present.
“The purpose of this event is to provide students with an opportunity to not only network and make business connections but also see what different career options and pathways there are in sustainability or that have a high social impact,” SEBA President Joey Bartel said.
The panel meeting discussed how students interested in business could get involved with corporations of all natures to work towards creating and maintaining a sustainable environment. Members of the panel argued against the idea that financial and sustainability efforts are mutually exclusive and that they can and do cooperate to satisfy the interests of both parties.
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The speed-networking activity also gave students, like Marketing major Mantas Kudzin, the opportunity to have more personal conversations with the representatives to broaden their view of potential career paths. The event attracted students with fields of study ranging from business management to philosophy.
Students were able to connect with the panel members on Linkedin, exchange emails and form new ideas about what type of careers they wished to pursue after graduation.
Kudzin said the event was useful because he got to speak with a lot of people who are in the industry that he wants to work in.
“It was really nice to see where their heads are at, and I was able to ask them questions that I wouldn’t be necessarily comfortable asking during a job interview because the stakes were a little lower,” Kudzin said.