Networking Events Boost Soka Student Career Opportunities
Soka students enjoyed mocktails and hors d’oeuvres with prospective employers during a networking happy hour event on May 5. The next day, they met executive directors, presidents, and CEOs at a virtual career fair.
Nina Battioni ’25 said the networking event was a good opportunity to meet many employers. “I went in looking for a possible job to start this summer, and I was lucky enough to get one through the recruiters I met there,” Battioni said.
Organized by SUA’s Career Services and Internships Office, the events were among the university’s recent efforts to bolster career networking opportunities for students. President Ed Feasel spoke at the networking happy hour to an audience of students and representatives from the for-profit and nonprofit worlds, including University Lab Partners, Festival of Arts/Pageant of the Masters, and Scientific Horizons Consulting. He emphasized the role of Soka education in developing students’ critical thinking and communication skills, preparing them for a future as leaders of the 21st century.
“After graduation, 70% of our students don’t go to grad school immediately,” Pres. Feasel said. “They go to work. Many of our alumni, quickly after they join a company, move into leadership roles.”
After exchanging LinkedIn profiles, resumes, and business cards at the networking happy hour, students reserved time slots to meet with any of the 27 companies that participated in the virtual career fair the following day, including Hoag Hospital, Human Resources Services for the County of Orange, and the US Department of State. The online format enabled students to attend employer information sessions for companies based both in and outside California. Those who wanted to speak to employers individually were able to sign up for one-on-one sessions.
Mahir Anand ’25 encouraged Soka students looking to make connections in their field of interest to attend similar networking events in the future. “The event provided a community of togetherness, which helped me build on my social skills,” Anand said. “It also gave me an excellent opportunity to network with like-minded individuals.”
—Lilia Benavides Medina ’24