Let’s say you are a brand new MBA student at the Wisconsin School of Business and while you enjoy sharpening your accounting, finance, and marketing skills, you are also interested in helping to promote diversity in business, learning how to use business as a force for environmental and social good, networking with local entrepreneurs or maybe simply connecting with your fellow classmates in a more relaxed social setting. How can you ensure your educational experience also encapsulates these additional interests?
I have great news; The Wisconsin School of Business has student organizations for all kinds of interest.
Student organizations have provided me the opportunity to not only hyper-focus on specific industries and business functions that interest me, but also to connect with my fellow classmates, especially in the new virtual world we all find ourselves in. I am fortunate to be on the leadership team of 3 different student organizations: Net Impact, Food & Wine Club, and the Graduate Marketing Network. Each organization is challenged with creating robust and engaging content for the student body. While I have enjoyed every event I have attended, listed below are 3 of my absolute favorites:
- Net Impact Sustainability Competition: During the spring 2020 semester, the other newly elected Net Impact board members and I worked with the previous Net Impact leadership team to execute the first ever Net Impact Sustainability Competition. For this event, we challenged students from various programs (graduate and undergraduate) to develop and recommend an initiative to help make Grainger Hall more sustainable. There were cash prizes for the top teams, and the winning team had their final proposal submitted to Green Fund, with the chance that Green Fund will finance and implement their recommendation. It was an incredible experience that we plan on turning into an annual event. It also showcased the positive and lasting impact student organizations can have at the school.
- Food & Wine Virtual Cooking Class: Adjusting to the virtual environment has provided an opportunity for student organization leaders to develop creative solutions to engage with the student body. A great example of this is the Food & Wine Club’s virtual cooking class that we hosted this semester. We asked a fellow classmate (known for his skills in the kitchen) to show participants how to replicate his famous Butter Chicken recipe. We asked all participants to come to the event with the required ingredients for the dish and we all worked together (virtually) to prepare our respective dinners. The event was an absolute blast and students enjoyed learning more about our classmate’s culture through one of his favorite recipes.
- Graduate Marketing Network Non-Profit Marketing with Miles4Migrants Co-Founder and Managing Director Andy Freedman: One perk of the virtual environment is the ability to connect with alumni and speakers that may have been unable to travel to Madison for an in-person event. The Graduate Marketing Network capitalized on this opportunity by hosting a virtual event with a 2006 Center for Brand and Product Management alumni, Andy Freeman. This past fall 2020 semester, Andy joined a video call and spoke about his Miles4Migrants organization and shared insights into some of the challenges and opportunities of working in the non-profit sector.
I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to participate in various student organizations during my time at the Wisconsin School of Business. Each group has exposed me to new ways of thinking and enabled me to connect with my fellow classmates who share similar passions. No matter your interest, the WSB has a student org for that.