CAREER CONNECTIONS SERIES : DJ SINGLETERRY – Looking Back on GCC

The Goizueta Career Connection was a great experience. Going into it, I was not entirely sure what to expect in regards to interactions and conversations with recruiters/alumni. I think the atmosphere created by the small breakout groups; high percentage of GBS alum by attending firms as well as structured preparation, led through the CMC throughout our Professional Development coursework, all positioned my peers and I for success during the event.

It all began with the atmosphere. Students were broken into small groups of 5 or 6 and then rotated around to small tables with typically 2 people from each company. This created a small environment forcing students to actively engage not just when they asked a question, but also when the spotlight was not on them. Typically, the conversation would begin with a quick overview of each person’s background and then proceed into the rapid fire of questions. Two things I learned quickly were first get your question out earlier rather than later because your peers are smart and are probably biting at the bit to ask the same question. Next was that I did not have to ask a question at every company table to begin to understand the general gist of the role and brief overview of the firm. These small groups were effective at helping me develop relationships early on with both peers of similar functional interest and company recruiters, many of whom were GBS alumni.

The next reason why I believe it was a tremendous experience was the sheer number of alumni the CMC was able to bring on campus. Emory’s home in Atlanta, GA makes it an attractive market to many GBS alumni. To me, this combined with the return of alumni for continued recruitment and networking opportunities symbolizes Goizueta’s intimate community and their dedication to pay-it-forward. This was one of the main reasons I chose to attend Emory over other top-20 programs and it was great to see that kind of tight-knit community alive and well in alumni, the lifelines of the program. Leaving the last session for the day I wondered which firm I would be representing in three years or so as a returning alumni for GCC.

My high school football coach always preached that “Practice makes perfect” and for me, Professional Development provided the right combination of structure and timing to get me prepared for the event. Beginning with STAR stories and resume walkthroughs in the first two weeks of class helped me to build up know-how early on for a truly successful experience. Whether it was prepping with classmates or counselors from the CMC, with every conversation my story became easier to tell and more engaging. By the time GCC rolled around on Friday August 23rd I sounded confident giving my elevator pitch, resume walk through and STAR stories on command. This confidence, forged by proper preparation, helped me to get the most out of my GCC experience and present myself with confidence to core company recruiters with Goizueta.

Overall, I had a great experience leading up to and participating in this year’s GCC event. My experience not only helped introduce me to a number of my target companies, but also gave me an opportunity to practice and get feedback on my story before some of the larger diversity MBA conferences later in the Fall