The Latin American Student Association and Georgetown Aspiring Minority Business Leaders and Entrepreneurs held the first annual International Career Conference on Thursday in the Fisher Colloquium.
The all-day conference offered students an opportunity to network and seek job and internship opportunities with international companies, such as HSBC, Goldman Sachs and Deloitte. Internship and job opportunities both within and outside the United States were offered.
LASA had previously held the Latin American Career Conference, a version of the fair focused on connecting students with future employees in Latin America. The conference has been redeveloped this year as the International Career Conference in order to provide students with career opportunities on a global scale.
Representatives from major multinational companies attended the event. A panel was hosted for both graduate and undergraduate students, followed by a career fair and opportunities for informal interviews and networking.
Tatiana Lizarralde (MSB ’16) and Ludovico Bassetti (COL ’16), co-presidents of the independent conference board, have been responsible for expanding the conference. Both were involved in the Latin American Career Conference and approached GAMBLE as another sponsor to increase outreach.
“As presidents, we have managed and overseen the entire planning and execution. This would not have been possible without the relations and progress established in previous years,” Lizarralde said.
Working with a qualified board comprised of nine members to reinvent the conference, Bassetti and Lizarralde are enthusiastic about the first year of the International Career Conference.
“We are excited to contribute to the future of our fellow Hoyas,” Bassetti said. “We believe that Georgetown students are intelligent, driven and well-rounded. Our ultimate goal is to help create an environment in which these qualities can be best exploited.”
Lizarralde and Bassetti explained that their ultimate goals are driven by the conference’s motto: “Where excellence meets opportunity.” They seek to help students become more prepared for the job searching process and make it easier for undergraduates.
“We strive to create a comprehensive event that facilitates the job searching process by bringing a diverse array of companies, giving students an opportunity to learn how to present themselves and approach recruiters more confidently,” Bassetti said.
The opportunity will be particularly beneficial to international students who are looking for career options outside of the United States.
“International students face a range of visa problems which we help them overcome by bringing companies that either sponsor visas in the United States, have positions abroad or have special programs directed to individuals without working visas,” Lizarralde said.
Nicole Allerano (SFS ’16), the president of LASA, expects hundreds of students to attend the conference since it is sponsored by LASA and one of LASA’s biggest events of the year.
Allerano acknowledged that although upperclassman students typically get more attention at career conferences, many sophomores have gotten summer internship opportunities through the Latin American Career Conference in the past at companies like Bank of America. Allerano is confident that students of all ages have benefited from the conference.
“As an attendee, the conference [would] be very valuable for my personal career development,” Allerano said.
GAMBLE, one of the conference’s main sponsors, has also helped to make the conference more international by expanding the list of attending companies. Daisy Peraza (COL ’15), co-president of GAMBLE, expressed her excitement for the organization’s involvement in the conference this year.
“We have invited many of our corporate sponsors to the conference,” Peraza said. “I am really excited for the International Career Conference because it will provide an avenue for our community to engage closely with top-tier firms and learn about their culture and job opportunities available.”
Rebecca Cassidy, assistant dean and director of the MSB’s Professional Development Center, believes that the conference is important for a diversity of students at Georgetown.
“From a career adviser perspective, whether you are an American student looking to work abroad, an international student looking to stay in the U.S., or anyone looking to work for a multinational corporation, having the international perspective is invaluable,” Cassidy said.
Cassidy explained that while only 7 percent of MSB graduates work internationally, it is very difficult for international students to find employment in the United States.
“To see very high-level companies coming to Georgetown to speak specifically about their international opportunities is very exciting,” she said.
Cassidy is confident that the International Career Conference would be extremely valuable to student education in the MSB, allowing them to understand the international business world they learn about in class.
“With the pace of globalization, it would be difficult to work in any environment without having an understanding of how internationally dependent countries and companies are on each other,” she said. “Our faculty does an excellent job of bringing in the global perspective into the classroom; GAMBLE and LASA are helping by providing opportunities for students to apply that global perspective after graduation.”