Last month, during the week of Sept 15-19 we hosted our annual COM Week activities. For about six years now, the department has offered this week of events for students to get experiences outside of the normal classroom through what we call “master classes,” to learn directly from alums and professionals working in good jobs. And as a culminating activity, we host a networking luncheon to connect students and alums. This is something we believe is inherently valuable to students and it also provides alums with connections back to the department and MSU generally. “It’s good thing,“ as Martha Stewart would say, that we give you real life examples of “what do you do with a COM major.”
It’s a good thing that may need to be rethought. Over the years, attendance at the events has been solid, but sporadic. This year, master classes were not well attended…in fact, it was dismal. Instead of blaming students (you) for not coming to these free and extremely useful activities, I started thinking about why students didn’t come in larger numbers as in the past. I’m still a bit perplexed about this. If students are busy, what are you busy doing? Were the scheduled event times inconvenient? If so, why? Did we not give you enough advance notice? Were the topics too vague for you to want to register? For those students who did register, why didn’t they show up? Ultimately, I’m left with more questions than answers. We want to serve you and provide useful programs and opportunities, and we do our best to tailor events to your needs (surveys, information given in classes, input, student involvement in planning). At some point, it’s up to you to attend (or not). So, where do we go from here?
Having said that, the networking luncheon on Friday was a huge success. We had very strong numbers of students who registered AND attended. The feedback during and after the luncheon was extremely positive (from both students and alums). Perhaps these types of networking activities are more of what you need? Instead of learning about how to write a good resume or use the newest techniques for posting your resume, perhaps you just want to meet people who can help you get jobs (and get fed at the same time J). I’d like to hear from you about this so that next year we can plan appropriate and exciting activities that you will clamor to attend.
In a future InCommon, I’ll post some of the great tips that the alums shared during COM Week.
MORE THINGS TO CONSIDER…
I get requests from fellow students to post items in the blog and I’m happy to do, here’s one:
FROM: Andrew Meyer (COM Major)Missouri State SIFE is partnering with Drury SIFE to host project WISE (Women Inspiring Student Entrepreneurs).This project will help female students make business connections, meet women in their future career field, and network to find possible internship/career opportunities. Students who sign up will be matched with an entrepreneur. They will then be invited to attend an opening banquet, held on Monday, October 27, where students will meet their business counterpart, arrange a date to shadow them, and hear from a keynote speaker. The project will conclude with a closing banquet to be held on Thursday, November 20, where you will have a chance to reflect on your experience and provide project feedback. WISE is a project specifically designed by Drury SIFE to provide a unique networking and learning opportunity for college women. To apply for project WISE, please visit, http://www.drury.edu/multinl/story.cfm?ID=22586&NLID=288To be considered for participation, students must submit an application no later than Wednesday, October 8, 2008.Questions? Contact Project Leader, Caitlin Pierce, at CPierce02@drury.edu (417) 873-7378.Andy Meyer, President, Missouri State SIFE (Missouristatesife@gmail.com) (417) 773-2415.