On Friday, MUSE and Wharton Retail Club hosted the 9th annual MARC (Marketing. Advertising. Retail. Conference) Conference. While the festivities began in the early hour of 8AM, I joined the conference, after having attended my classes, for the networking lunch at 12:15pm. During this time, Penn students (and some non-Penn students) ate lunch with recruiters and representatives from companies like Microsoft, Target, Free People, and more. Having completed the survey which ranked the companies I wished to sit with, I got lucky and sat with my top two choices: Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s (sigh!). Two representatives, a college recruiter and a men’s buyer, were from Macy’s, and the other from Bloomingdale’s – also a college recruiter. I was beyond excited to hear their stories and learn about how they each landed a job in the industry in which I dream of pursuing a career. After hearing their respective stories, gaining insight into the industry, and asking almost every single question about landing that perfect internship, I felt confident and motivated about pursuit of my dream.
Following the networking lunch was the keynote speech. Mitchel Habib, COO of Nielsen, was the keynote speaker. Nielsen is a company that provides its clients with data about what its consumers buy (watch, listen to, etc.) Present in 100 countries across the world, Nielsen is a global leader in measurement and information. Habib gave an interactive speech on Nielsen’s innovations all while giving advice on career paths. Whenever a topic warranted audience participation, the respective person received a prize; prizes ranged from GAP gift cards to mini iPads (gasp!). Habib even had some of his co-workers showcase some of the cool projects Nielsen is currently working on; products ranged from a “Top 10” app (to be released in June 2013) and a machine which reads a person’s brain signal in order to learn what stimuli in media they enjoy the most.
The last segment of the Conference was the Career Fair. During this time, students were able to network with all the recruiters, passing along their resumes, acquiring brochures and cool paraphernalia, and requesting business cards. It was a free for all! Since most of the companies are looking for rising juniors and seniors, the career fair was way less competitive and pressure for me. Still, I enjoyed talking with the reps and learning more about the company. You never know where a contact might lead!
This is just one of the many incredible events that Penn has to offer. Again, the two hosting clubs were in Wharton, but I still was able to attend as a student in the College. So never let that get in the way! I’ll close with one final thought: a senior I met at the conference is a student at Muhlenberg College (in Allentown, PA), and she told me that she frequently has to travel for conferences, because companies like those mentioned above almost never visit her campus. So I say to you my fellow Fisher Hassenfelders- take advantage of all the opportunities-write them down in a planner or notebook if you need to (I know I do)! Here is a link to the Wharton events calendar, so you can see what might be happening soon that piques your interest!