Halifax is a beautiful city to live in while completing your MBA, but not where everyone wants to stay after graduation. Ontario is not only where many of our MBA candidates hail from, but is where over half of our graduates seek employment. In order for our students to be able to establish connections and pursue post-grad job opportunities, this year Dalhousie’s Management Career Services (MCS) created a two-day networking trip called Toronto Connect. I was fortunate to be able to experience this excursion first-hand.
In January, 16 of us embarked on the inaugural Toronto Connect trip. On the first day of the trip we attended several corporate tours. We got to visit the downtown offices of companies including Scotiabank, TD Bank, Aon, Sustainalytics, Avison Young, and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. There was also an opportunity to network with CRMBA Alumni over drinks at a popular Irish pub after a day of touring these potential employers.
On the second day, we were hosted by the Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University for the MBA Employment Summit. This was another opportunity to network with potential employers as well as other MBA Candidates; there were students there from DeGroote School of Business at McMaster University, the Goodman School of Business at Brock University, and of course the Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University. The summit included breakout sessions run by professionals in the Toronto business community as well as a networking lunch and trade show.
All of the feedback I have heard about the trip has been very positive. Our MCS team of Anna Cranston, Amy McLellan and Ally Howard spent months working on the logistics of the trip and coordinating meetings and tours with employer partners. They even created two streams to accommodate the different interests of the students attending the trip! There was a finance group and a group for those interested in other opportunities such as consulting and marketing.
Not only did we have the opportunity to scope out the downtown offices of a group of amazing companies, but we also got to do this at virtually no cost! That’s right – most of the funding for the trip came from the Annual Fund and not from our personal bank accounts. This means that each student who attended Toronto Connect had most of their expenses for the trip completely covered.
My fellow student, Sean Tait, “appreciated the opportunity to extend [his] network in Ontario and meet in person with prospective employers.” To read Sean’s blog post on networking click here.
My favourite part about the trip was the first day of corporate tours. I enjoyed visiting both the Aon and Sustainalytics offices and found everyone there to be very welcoming and willing to answer all of our questions. Representatives from senior management and HR were in attendance, and we were able to hear many different perspectives to get a broad picture of what it would be like to work there.
Our class really appreciates the effort put in by MCS to organize Toronto Connect 2015 and we hope that future cohorts are able to have similar experiences!
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