The holidays are sneaking up on us here at the Universities at Shady Grove (USG) and so are the holiday parties. I was recently invited to the 2017 Holiday Networking Event hosted by the Student Construction Association of Montgomery College, the program which provides 95 percent of the students for the University of Maryland Eastern Shore’s Construction Management and Technology (UMES CMT) program offered on the USG campus. I was never one to decline an invitation to a good social. However, I have been a bit under the weather lately and almost could not attend. With the help of some over the counter medication, I was able to muster up the strength to attend and saw first-hand why networking around the grove is important. So here’s my take away from attending this great event that was hosted by an impressive group of student leaders that are future USG students!
Held on Thursday 7th December in the Technical Center building of the Montgomery College’s Rockville Campus, the event was an excellent opportunity to meet industry professionals, learn more about the construction field and share information about the program at USG. It was a fantastic event held just around the corner from USG where attendees included industry professionals from some of the leading general construction and subcontractor companies in Montgomery County, leaders in construction education, students in the Montgomery College program and students from the UMES CMT program. The venue was nicely decorated with a festive Christmas theme, and there were many delicious treats to satisfy the appetite of the energetic crowd of attendees. The event was free and lasted for just over 2 hours.
While it is no secret that the USG campus provides many incredible networking opportunities throughout the year, it is great to note that there are also many other networking opportunities in the broader community, that being a USG student gets you in the door. Like many of my readers, I often feel that I am too busy to attend events, but after attending, I realized that networking is one of the most valuable uses of my time.
It provided a nice break and basically allowed me to spread the name of USG across a vast audience, an audience that can add significant value to USG, the UMES CMT program, and my personal, professional development. And an audience that was especially curious to learn more about the USG campus. Below are a few pictures taken at the event.
Attending this networking event provided opportunities for me to not only interact with current friends but to also form new friendships. I was able to establish new bonds of a lifetime by simply sharing information about USG, information that changed perspectives and even attitudes. I was surprised to know how little folks knew about USG and while at times it did seem like I was trying to sell something, I was delighted to use the laid-back atmosphere that the event provided to chat with folks and discover potential ways we could work together. Check out a few pictures showing just how laid back the atmosphere was.
So as you go forth in this winter break, accept as many invitations as possible for networking events, and you will see the value in forming and maintaining a strong contact base. The words of the Chair of the USG Board of Advisors, Mike Knapp in his recent greetings to the campus sums up the importance of this in this line “you are our community’s next generation of leaders, and as leaders you can help ensure that USG continues to grow by not only advocating in Annapolis but by becoming ambassadors for USG in the community and helping to make sure they know who we are and what we do.”