Students, Employers Attend Speed-Networking EventSeptember 19, 2013

Students in Rockhurst University’s nonprofit leadership studies program were recently offered a unique opportunity: to participate in a speed-networking event.

On Wednesday, Sept. 18, employers from 22 different nonprofit organizations came to RU’s campus eager to speak to more than 30 students about volunteer, internship, part-time and full-time opportunities. The event was set up so that each time a bell rang, students would move from one table to the next to start a new conversation with that organization’s representative.

“This is the third year in a row we’ve offered this event to students, and so far it has been very successful,” said Jennifer Rinella, director of the nonprofit leadership studies program, housed within Rockhurst’s School of Graduate and Professional Studies. “We’ve found that students and employers prefer this interactive format over the traditional job fair set-up because it gives everyone a chance to meet each other. It’s a fun, non-threatening environment where students can practice networking and begin to develop meaningful professional relationships without ever leaving campus.”

Ann Van Zee, community outreach programs manager and AmeriCorps program director for Harvesters, attended the event to connect with students who may be interested in full-time AmeriCorps service positions in nutrition education and volunteer management.

“The great thing about this event is that we’re able to talk to the students one-on-one about their career goals,” said Van Zee. “This format enables organizations to reach every student, so even if we are not a good fit for them, we’ve helped increase their awareness and opened up the possibility for them to refer a friend or colleague who may be interested.”

Other organizations at the event included Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Kansas City, Boy Scouts of America, Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City, Bridging the Gap, Enterprise Center of Johnson County, Girl Scouts of Northeast Kansas and Northwest Missouri, Habitat for Humanity, Kansas City ReStore, Jackson County Victim’s Services, Jesuit Volunteer Corps, Jumpstart Kansas City, Kingswood Senior Living, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Midwest Foster Care and Adoption Association, Newhouse Domestic Violence Shelter, Prosperity Center for Financial Opportunity, Rockhurst High School Alumni Service Corps, Tutorious, Upper Room and the YMCA of Greater Kansas City.

Learn more about Rockhurst’s nonprofit leadership studies program here.

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