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MBA Students Participate in Speed Networking Luncheons

The Graduate Career Management Office at LMU’s College of Business Administration recently organized two speed networking luncheons for MBA students to meet and mingle with representatives from local companies. The no-cost luncheons were limited to 20 students and 20 company representatives to encourage purposeful dialogue in an intimate setting.

The first luncheon, held on March 16, focused on finance and brought finance students face to face with some of the top financial companies in Los Angeles, such as Deloitte, American Honda Finance Corp, Citibank Commercial Banking, City National Bank, Farmers Insurance, Northwest Mutual and Internet Brands. Finance Professor David Offenberg was there to greet employers, share information about the LMU MBA finance program and help finance students make meaningful connections with corporate representatives in attendance. 

The second luncheon, held on March 23, focused on marketing and connected marketing students with representatives from local companies, including Fox Sports, Microsoft/Xbox, Marcus & Millichap, Deutsch Advertising, Sugar Foods, TOMS Shoes and Honeywell. Marketing Professor Mark Leach also attended the event to share information about the LMU MBA marketing program and meet and talk with our corporate guests. Dr. Ed Smallman, director of graduate career management at the College of Business Administration, commented that faculty members have been particularly supportive of the luncheons and willing to do all in their power to help them be successful.

Both events started off with a 30-minute casual meet-and-greet where introductions were made over a light lunch. Next, employers took their seats at prearranged tables displaying their company name for several rounds of speed networking. Students were given 3-4 minutes to learn more about the company, inquire about available job/internship opportunities and pick up a business card. After several minutes, a whistle would sound indicating it was time to rotate to the next table.  

“The purpose of these networking events was to help spread awareness of LMU’s MBA Program and have local companies meet our students,” said Dr. Smallman. “These events also allowed our students to create connections with companies they were interested in.”

Given that these events were the first of their kind for the Graduate Career Management Office, the feedback from employers and students has been overwhelmingly positive. In fact, several students have already started a dialogue with employers they met at the events. According to Dr. Smallman, events like these are examples of the power of networking at its best.