Babson’s Boston Connect Flexes Its Networking Muscles in 4th Consecutive Year
By Jeff Branz, Grad CCD Fellow and MBA 2018 Candidate
On Thursday, December 1, 2016, the Graduate and Undergraduate Centers for Career Development kicked off the new month with a bang with their 4th annual Babson Boston Connect. Now, this was not your typical career event. This was networking – the Babson way.
When you think of a career event, you might think of sitting in a classroom and looking at a PowerPoint presentation while one recruiter talks about one company. This event could not have been more different. This was elegant, buzzing, and action packed. Held at the LogMeIn offices in the seaport district of Boston, the location set the tone for the night. When you walked in, you were greeted with two floors of open office space in one of the most modern and innovative spaces I have ever seen. With two bars set up, a fully catered spread, and passed hors d’oeuvres, the place was buzzing from the get-go.
After arriving, students were able to grab some food and a drink and have some of the most genuine and earnest networking time with the company representatives, while they waited for the event to “officially” begin. According to Gabriel Gmora Backal, a Two-Year MBA student in the class of 2018, this part “set a positive tone for everyone so we were all excited to talk to each other” once the event began. Table host, 88 Acres, very generously supplied an abundance of their healthy snack bars.
The night was kicked off by Donna Sosnowski , Director of the Undergraduate Center for Career Development at Babson and was followed up with some additional welcome remarks by our gracious host, Mario Finocchiaro, Vice President of Business Development & Strategic Alliances from LogMeIn. All eyes remained fixed on the main stage, as we transitioned right into our panel discussion for the night. The panel discussion was extremely informative and insightful as Mario Finocchiaro from LogMeIn and Babson Blended Learning student Andrea Bonaiuto, from Brussels Airlines, volleyed back and forth answering questions from the moderator.
This duo was able to touch on a wide range of subjects including the importance of mentors, finding a job that clicks, making bold moves, and their definition of an entrepreneur. There was even an opportunity for the students to ask some questions directly to the panel. As Barbara Oney, a Blended Learning student put it, the panel “was not too long, provided both a young person’s and more seasoned person’s perspective on career development. As a more “seasoned” student, this means a lot to me.”
Once the panel ended, the networking instantaneously resumed. There were 42 companies in attendance, across a myriad of industries, each with their own table, spread out across the 2 floors. This gave the 160 students and alumni in attendance a wide variety of options and at any point, there was always somebody interesting to talk to. Noelle San Jose, Campus Recruitment Program Manager for Hubspot commented, “Students were well-prepared in advance and seemed very comfortable in their own skin. Their humility stood out for me- I really appreciated their confidence in speaking to their own abilities, being able to read the conversation appropriately and selling themselves in a more natural way. The “tech” vibe was awesome and jelled nicely with us and our own culture.”
Anna Sise, a Two-Year MBA student in the class of 2018 remarked that she “felt the varied opportunities showcased at the event helped open my mind up to the many different avenues I could take this summer and after graduation.”
Overall, it was an extremely special night filled with Babson students, alumni and employers who all came together to network and connect. Brandon Eigenberg, VP of AXA, remarked, “great location, very well-attended, well-organized and professional. Students were well-prepared and had done their research. Many quality candidates.”
Unlike a traditional career event, Babson students were delighted to have the opportunity to speak with multiple companies in one night, eat some great food, and ultimately make some lasting and useful connections for the job hunt ahead!