ASK night to introduce alums, students next week

Alumni Sharing Knowledge (ASK) is an event, hosted by the Alumni Council and Employment Services Committee, and organized by Career and Employment Services (CES) that will take place on Thursday Oct. 24, from 7-8:30 p.m. in Wheelock Student Center Marshall Hall.
“ASK Night is a reception that provides students and alumni with a chance to mingle and talk about career fields, classes, graduate school, internships, volunteer activities, study abroad, and other experiences during and beyond Puget Sound,” said CES’s Communications Coordinator Kris Hay.
ASK is an important opportunity for all students to practice networking skills, to make future contacts with a wide range of professionals in a variety of careers.  It also offers students the opportunity to hear what others have done with their liberal arts education.
“I liked the range of professionals there from all different studies. I would recommend this event because it is not often that students can physically meet with the grown alumni of their college who have already traversed into their career path and can share direct experience and insight to follow,” said sophomore Nakisha Renee Jones, about last year’s ASK Night.
During the event Alumni will be stationed at tables throughout Marshall Hall.  Since ASK is a networking reception CES staff encourages students to treat the experience as an interview.  However they encourage that wardrobe should not be a barrier.
“Before going, I was a bit nervous myself, but everyone was really encouraging, supportive, and easy to talk to. You never know where you might make a great connection, and this is a great opportunity to reach out that is essentially handed to you on a silver platter once a year,” said  senior, Amy Stromme.
Students are encouraged to go because who better is there to answer questions about which courses to take, the graduate school admission process, co-curricular activities, or even how to conduct an effective job search than alumni. Hay added some advice, “while this isn’t a Career Fair—it’s an information gathering session—some alumni may have job or internship leads. Even if you don’t see anyone whose career field specifically matches your interests, the fabulous thing about a group of established professionals is that they are very well connected! Likely, they can introduce you to someone in their network who does fit your area of interest.”
As for freshman, it’s never too early to begin! “I thought I was ready to ‘schmooze’ with the big dogs, but ASK Night was a reality check in the best possible way. Not only did I meet cool, interesting people, but I got advice and a clearer picture of my road ahead,” said senior, Ian Fox.  Your professional network can only be added to. ASK Night is a safe place for students to get out and practice some of their networking skills early.
Remember, these professionals were once students too.
“Plus,” adds Hay, “not sure what major to select?  Alumni can offer advice. Is it hard to imagine life after graduation? Alumni can share stories from their experience that help you begin to envision your future. Alumni can offer encouragement, inspiration, ideas and advice. Make the most of it!”
If you are interested in learning more about ASK night and to see which alumni are planning to attend, check out the CES website at pugetsound.edu/ces.