Do you have an idea of what you want to do for your career, but lack the professional experience and/or connections to bring it to life? Are you left wondering what truly are all of your options after college? CWIB plans treks with the goal of helping members form their career paths a little more. Visiting real companies and networking with professional employees, all while fostering connections with your fellow CWIB members, is everything you will find on a trek. On September 20th-22nd, CWIB went on their first trek of the year to Nashville, Tennessee! These young women visited Nissan North America, Gaylord Resort, iHeart Media, and CAA (Creative Artists Agency). They gained valuable knowledge from these businesses about the corporate lifestyle, while simultaneously fostering new relationships with other empowering women in the professional world.
Sophomore Maria Keener told the CWIB Chronicles that, “the best professional experience I had was while visiting CAA. We were on the top floor of one of the buildings in downtown Nashville in a big conference room. It felt super official and was really cool to see a big office like that.” Emma Sedlack, another CWIB sophomore, agreed that the women of CAA “were all very accomplished and shared great advice.” Sometimes all you need is to see a company’s employees in action to see what their job is like and this was exactly what CAA gave our CWIB members!
Getting a feel for a variety of businesses is crucial in determining what corporate position you could see yourself in. Keener felt that Nissan North America left a memorable impression on her. “It [Nissan] was a good view…of what kind of work they do day to day. The most valuable thing I learned was just how much work takes up your life once you’re in the corporate world.” Although work does take up a significant amount of your time, Sedlack learned the importance of “taking time for yourself when you are working.” This advice from a Nissan employee helped her come to the realization that she was “inspired to get into the corporate finance industry” after the insight that was provided. Hearing other successful women describe their journey is the perfect opportunity to discover where your own interests lie. Although Sedlack may have already known what a career in finance looked like, having the chance to listen to real women in the field gave her that confidence that she can accomplish what they have already accomplished!
Obviously meeting all these companies is excellent networking practice, but getting to do so with fellow members is what made this trek that much more enjoyable. “I made a lot of new friends that empowered me to be a woman in business,” Keener said. Sedlack also loved the fact that she was “able to connect with the other CWIB members…and also explore such an awesome city…one I have always wanted to visit!” Treks are the perfect opportunity to grow your professional and personal connections, all while participating in new experiences.
Whether this was certain members’ first trek or not, Nashville definitely did not disappoint the attendees. They even had time for some fun tourist events! Check out the picture below of CWIB sitting in on a private tasting of the perfect guacamole, specially crafted by one of the Gaylord chefs.
Being empowered and empowering others is at the heart of CWIB’s objectives. Nashville left the attendees much more confident and career-ready than they ever imagined. Keener specifically felt that “Attending all the different meetings with such big companies was extremely inspiring, and hearing all the women already in the workforce talk about how they got there is extremely reassuring.” It can definitely be overwhelming trying to determine your career path, but by broadening your horizons of the business world, as Sedlack puts it, can lead to amazing opportunities. Nashville is one of four treks CWIB will be attending this semester, so as these women suggest, make sure to apply for the next one in order to feel as empowered as they do!
By: Emma Harwood