Conference helps committed CCNY students channel their passion toward careers.
On Friday, February 15, more than 100 socially committed City College students turned out for the Winter 2013 Involvement Conference: “Trending the Public Sector.” Sponsored by the Colin Powell Center and City Limits, the half-day conference offered CCNY students opportunities to network and explore public sector employment.
An exhibition in the Great Hall of Shepard Hall showcased some of New York City’s top public sector employers, including the Alcoa Foundation, Lift-The Bronx, and the Arts and Business Council of New York. Additionally four concurrent workshops focused on 1) Media Arts; 2) Engineering and the Environment; 3) Government, Policy, and Advocacy, and 4) Business and Economics. In each break-out session, panelists such as Hugh Smith, director of community outreach for Sam Schwartz Engineering, outlined their career trajectory, career advice, and their understanding of emerging trends in their field. Sam Schwartz Engineering handles large-scale public projects including the Second Avenue Subway expansion.
Insights from Tested Social Entrepreneurs
In the business and economics breakout session, a fully engaged group of participants gathered closely around the panelists, to catch their every word. Advice from tested social entrepreneurs such as Chike Ukaegbu, president of ReLife, and Quinton Lampkin, manager of partnerships and operations for the “I Have a Dream” Foundation, included: Cultivate mentors, and don't forgo skeptical individuals. "You want people who can say, 'I like you, but I don’t like your idea,” one panelist noted. "Then ask for specific feedback and improve your plan to overcome each problem."
In his opening words for the conference, Mark Anthony Thomas, director of City Limits, noted that many people who devote themselves to improving the public good trace their inspiration to their college experiences. This awareness, he said, inspired him to cosponsor the conference: "Our goal is to help you achieve this connection for yourselves today."