Lundquist College students made up more than a third of the approximately 150 multicultural University of Oregon students who attended the UO Diversity Career Symposium in Portland at the end of February.
Held in the elegant Multnomah Athletic Club, the event featured a roster of well-known companies and organizations as sponsors and presenters, including Enterprise Rent-a-Car, Apple, Fred Meyer, Kaiser Permanente, and Yelp, to name a few.
The day kicked off with a welcome speech and icebreaker exercise delivered by Jeffrey M. Siminoff, director of worldwide inclusion and diversity at Apple. Next, students headed off for the morning and afternoon panels on offer. Later in the afternoon, the group reconvened for a presentation by body language expert Vanessa Van Edward.
Empowered by Van Edward's talk, business administration major Ivan Hernandez '15 entered the day's final event—a networking session and mini career fair—armed with a new repertoire of nonverbal communication skills to try out on the alumni and employers in attendance.
For Hernandez, a senior who spent the fall studying in Uppsala, Sweden, and who is currently seeking a postgraduation position, the symposium came at the ideal time.
“The whole day gave me a brand new energy and a brand new focus,” said Hernandez.
During the networking session, students had the opportunity to get better acquainted with the day’s panelists. Alonso Zorilla ’17, a double major in business and product design who was recently admitted to the college's Business Honors program, spent 20 minutes talking with one of the panel speakers, a footwear designer for athletic apparel maker Under Armour.
"We talked about what he does for a living and his transition from being in the Marines to becoming a footwear designer. His talk with me really inspired me to continue pursuing my second major in product design," said Zorrilla.
For academic advisor Tayah Butler, the best part of this year’s symposium was seeing students she’d worked with during the past five years—through the Building Business Leaders (BBL) and CEO Network initiatives—return to the event as alumni professionals and recruiters.
“Growing a network of diverse UO graduates who develop into business leaders and continue to engage with the Lundquist College’s undergraduate program has always been a core element of the vision for BBL and the CEO Network,” said Butler. “I can’t tell you how thrilling it is to see this vision become a reality.”
Read Zorrilla's Blog Post
View/Download the Symposium Program