On November 13, close to 90 Skyline College Promise Scholar students participated in the Future Ready Conference, a three hour event introducing Skyline College students to Bay Area industry professionals, understanding local living wages and the importance of developing a professional first impression. At the event, the Center for Career and Workforce Programs set up “The Photo Shoppe”, a photo booth for students to take professional photographs to showcase on LinkedIn and to utilize across their digital profiles and resumes. This photo service will remain available at the Center for students to drop in during the academic year.
The welcome address by Andrea Vizenor, Director of the Career and Workforce Programs, introduced students to “The Power of the First Impression,” recognizing the importance of readiness to network in social, digital and interview settings. Then a short activity, led by the Job Placement Coordinators, guided students through developing their own personal “elevator pitch”, encouraging participants to be ready at all times to seize great networking opportunities.
The highlight of the event included a Q&A panel moderated by Ms. Vizenor of six Bay Area industry professionals offering career advice, tips and insight for students entering the work force. Panelists included:
- Michael Aurelio, UX Designer & Skyline College Instructor
- Laurel Moeslein, Program & Training Coordinator at SFO Airport
- Sergio Moreno, Account Specialist at Microsoft (Alumni of Skyline College)
- Stephen Redmond, Principal at Baden High School
- Erin Robbins, Developer of Corporate Responsibility
- Megan Wells, Freelance Writer at Credit Karma
The panelists inspired students with stories from their own educational and career experiences, advising students to be organized, maintain a great work ethic and have a willingness to learn and dress for success. While a range of industries were represented, a common theme presented itself– flexibility, hard work and self-discovery, played a critical role in panelists achieving success and meaningful careers. It was encouraged for students to focus on their strengths and be open to new opportunities. The event concluded with panelist joining students at each table for a more intimate and candid conversations.
The Future Ready Conference was the first of a series of career development experiences Skyline College Promise Scholars will participate in as they move through their educational journey and advance their academic and career preparation in pursuit of their dream job.
A special thank you to the Career and Workforce Team for all of their efforts to create a highly engaging and valuable event and to our industry partners for their meaningful contributions.
Article by Steven Lopez | Photo by Andrea Vizenor