Students tackle leadership conference in New York

On Nov. 2, nine GSU students were honored to “hit the runway” to New York City to attend the Thurgood Marshall Leadership Institute and Career Fair. The annual conference is sponsored by the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, which is the only organization that has awarded over 6,000 merit-based scholarships to HBCU students, not to mention the countless opportunities afforded through participation in their training programs.

This year’s theme was “Onboarding Talented Leaders Who Think Outside the BOX,” which was quite befitting for its setting in Times Square.

For five days the students participated in panel discussions about ethics in the workplace, how to acquire internships and co-ops, and attended etiquette training seminars that were to enhance their knowledge of how to break into their industry and how to do so in a tactful, yet graceful manner.

Some other activities included the Second Annual Front Row Fashion Show, which was hosted by actress Lynn Whitfield, and some students enjoyed a viewing of the The Color Purple.

The most rewarding experience was the Career Fair, which included sponsors from companies like Costco to UBS Wealth Management.

While in attendance, Whitney Moore-White, SGA president, landed a job interview with Accenture Consulting Firm, and is currently being considered for an entry-level position of management consulting analyst.

“I am a student of liberal arts, so oftentimes career fairs do not cater to my needs as a psychology major,” said Moore-White.

The conference concluded on Nov. 5, with a scholarship fund banquet at $1,000 donation per ticket.

A reception followed that allowed the students to exchange contact information, as well as rub elbows with the executive officers of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, as well as celebrities like Fonzworth Bently and Oscar-nominated Terrance Howard.

“This once-in-a-lifetime opportunity was one that will not soon be forgotten,” said Moore-White.

Because there were only 600 slots available to students, a nationwide hunt for leading scholars was necessary.

As for the nine GSU student representatives, the selection process originated with the solicitation of nominations from faculty, staff and administrators, followed by an interview process with Gloria George, assistant director for scholarships, and Candice Staples, TMCF program career counselor.

Throughout this process, students were rated according to leadership, communication, interpersonal and interviewing skills, as well as internship/volunteer experience, a GPA of 2.9 or better, and involvement in extracurricular activities.

Those in this nationally recognized organization have been dedicated to providing leadership development, career training and capacity building to GSU along with the other 46 public universities in the HBCU community for 20 years.

Those interested in learning more about how to take part in the Thurgood Marshall Leadership Institute, contact Gloria George at arnoldg@ gram.edu or visit www.thurgoodmarshallfund.org.