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How Engineers Benefit from a Business Conference

Jenna-NewmanI heard about the C2B Conference from Forté at the SWE National Conference last year. At first, I was curious as to what a business affiliated organization was doing at an engineering conference, but I decided to stop by anyway. I saw they were having a raffle for an all-expenses paid trip to Austin, TX for a College to Business program.

Not knowing too much about business and having nothing to lose, I entered and I won. Through this experience, I learned a lot of things that helped me understand not only things in business, but aspects on how to better myself in whatever career path I chose.

During the conference, there were many things about it that were very helpful to me, but two things in particular stick out in my mind.

Build Your Personal Brand

Lindsay Hough, a speaker from Deloitte, talked about how women can become powerful leading figures, how we can build and keep up our network of people that support us, and how to create a personal brand for ourselves.

Being the secretary of the Society of Women Engineers at my university, I feel that this is some useful information to help the women of my organization in advertising themselves to potential employers.

Learn Business Basics

The second part of the conference that was an eye-opener was this program that simulated a real business by creating chains all over the world. Each person got a designated job on the business team and we all worked together over the course of 4 “periods” where we would create a new product, manufacture, upgrade, advertise, and expand without going into debt.

This was extremely challenging and taught me all of the different aspects of business and how essential each part is.

Being an engineering major, the last thing you think about is business, but think about it — if you move up higher in a company, for example, to become Vice President of your division, you will need to have a strong business foundation. Having a familiar background with business can only help you further advance in your career.

I would recommend anyone who can go to the C2B Conference to go, even if you feel like business is not something you thought you were interested in.

 

Jenna Newman is in her second year at the University of South Florida in Tampa. She is majoring in Chemical Engineering with the intention of going into health and medicine.

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