By Anna Gombert
On Thursday, October 26, Drew had its annual Speed Networking event, which allowed students to connect with local executives from the Madison area. The event was held in Crawford Hall and, like speed dating, students got eight minutes to talk to an executive until they had to switch tables. The event has been held for the past several years.
Professor of Economics and Business Marc Tomljanovich, CFO of Madison Jim Burnet, Jaclyn Imbriano (‘18) and the President’s office all collaborated to organize the event.
Imbriano explained how as a student, she functioned as a point person on campus for the planning of the event. She helped organize parking for the executives and handled the room reservations, as well as making sure there was enough student involvement at the event.
She elaborated on her role in the organization of the event, stating, “For the 2017-18 school year I was awarded the CECM fellowship with the Borough of Madison. So pretty much I planned a couple events throughout the course of the year.” She continued, “There are two more I am planning next semester, and it’s just trying to engage businesses in Madison and the government with students at Drew. Because we are kind of blocked off and the goal is to try to make it so we’re all one community.”
Leah Nadel (‘18), who attended the event, stated, “I came here to help out a friend, but I walked out with valuable life lessons that I did not expect. I came in thinking I wasn’t going to get much out of it because I’m a biology person and this is business, but I got some great life and career advice.”
Tomljanovich, who is also the executive director of the business program, explained, “We brought executives in, and we’ve done this round robin style, which really gets students used to talking about themselves, gaining confidence and also learning from all these executives about all these different fields and what areas might be of interest to them.”
Imbriano continued, “It really helps seniors because this event gives them the chance to do little mini interviews before they actually have to go out for job interviews. For underclassmen it can provide internship opportunities that then lead to a job, and it’s just a seamless transition.” She also emphasized how this event helped humanize the executives.
Tomljanovich added, “It’s getting students out of the classroom, it’s making them realize what is possible. So these types of events help students realize, ‘Oh, I can actually do it by taking this path,’ and the first step is really talking and networking.”
There will be the annual Business Around the World event in the Spring.