By Kyle Boldin, Contributing Writer
Wednesday, Sept. 26, the Brotherhood of McKendree (BMCK) dressed to the nines as they hosted their first ever business forum event in the lecture hall of PAC 222. Brought together by the BMCK president, Edward Hill II, in conjunction with McKendree Career Services, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity and Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, the forum discussed professional development topics ranging from resume and cover letter builders, how to dress for interviews, mock interview practice and professional etiquette.
When asked about his inspiration for the event, Hill noted that the majority of his fellow college students often find themselves “in the hot seat, and feel nervous” when entering the professional world. The skills learned are a “business within themselves;” even if a student plans to acquire a minimum wage profession, professional development skills are essential to move up within the corporation.
While the event itself did not have the highest turnout, the students that did attend were incredibly engaged, as the forum allowed the opportunity for open discussion in which students can voice their opinions and questions during the different presentations. Questions from the student body ranged from color schemes when planning interview outfits, types of honors and awards to list on the resume and guidelines when sending thank you letters to potential employers.
As the forum came a close, Hill gave thanks to the many supporters of the event, including the members of Phi Beta Sigma, and Zeta Phi Beta who discussed interview appearance and Jennifer Pickerell, who discussed an often overlooked topic of professional development: guidelines when sending thank you letters. As Hill noted, both are fundamental aspects which “allow candidates to move further within any profession, by setting apart candidates who are serious from those who are not.”
When asked if the forum would continue for years to come, Hill responded positively, but did remark on the time constraints that may have prevented a more massive turnout. However, the event was extremely informative, and I was glad I attended. Despite already being a senior, I managed to leave the forum with a variety of new skills in professional development. It was truly a Wednesday evening well spent.