Here you will find the Event Report for the 2016 Alumni Event, held August 4th 2016:
2nd Annual Alumni Event – Hosted by the Chemistry Professional Development Organization (CPDO).
On Sunday, July 24, 2016, alumni from academia and industry gathered on campus from as far as Greece for the second annual alumni networking workshop and dinner. The event was comprised of industry and academic panels, a speed networking event, and a catered dinner. Alumni returned to visit old friends, mingle with the current class of graduate students & post-docs, discuss career opportunities, and offer advice on how to obtain their career objectives.
The day began with alumni led panels, where graduate students mined alumni for secrets about how to get the first job offer, navigate a successful career, and learn about potential employment opportunities. After their turn in the spotlight, the alumni turned the tables for a speed interviewing event. Students had a limited time to pitch their best attributes, and brand themselves for the types of positions that the alumni’s company offers. Alumni represented a range of companies and schools, including Dow Agrosciences, BASF, PPG,P&G, MSU, and UNH.
The interviewing event was held in multiple rounds, where students visited different alumni in groups to give their pitch, hear the pitches of others, and then receive immediate feedback. It was this positive and constructive atmosphere that inspired the statement, “I wish we could have another few rounds!” – even before the bar opened for complimentary drinks. Lastly, alumni provided general feedback and recommendations to the entire group of participants about interviews and job talks.
After the formal portion of the program was complete, the group enjoyed dinner and drinks with a panoramic view of central campus from the Rackham Building rooftop. Social hour flowed into dinner, and the casual discussions pinballed from Pokemon Go to the benefits of video interviewing to raccoons acting as uninvited house guests (but somehow they can be better at keeping things tidy than the actual occupants).
CPDO is grateful for the participation of all alumni, and was impressed by the students that challenged themselves in the speed interviewing event. As an organization, we benefit tremendously by many types of alumni interaction throughout the year, and wanted to demonstrate this appreciation to our alumni. CPDO’s first ever Alumni Service Award was conferred upon Scott Osborne from Proctor & Gamble. Scott’s involvement with the chemistry students over the past year has been substantial – presenting on interviewing, doing one-on-one resume reviews, giving an introduction to technologies at P&G, leading a Serial Innovators workshop, and more. All of this is in addition to Scott’s participation in the alumni panel and speed interviewing events that afternoon.
Organizations like CPDO thrive through the engagement of alumni like Scott that enable us to host exciting events throughout the year. We were very happy to have so many alumni participate in the annual alumni networking event, and look forward to seeing everyone again 2017!