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Career Development hosts first Black and Brown Networking Night for students, alumni, and staff

by Jennifer Bush,

Willamette students at the Black and Brown Business Networking Night

mba-career-dev2.jpgOn October 6, Willamette University’s Career Development held the first Black and Brown Business Networking Night.

Atkinson Career Management Career Advisor Manny Machado spearheaded the event, which emerged from student demand.

“Students came up to me and said that guest speakers, employers, and alumni who visit their classes are almost always older White men. They wanted to network with people who look like them and share some of the same experiences as them,” Machado said. “ Networking is not easy, and I wanted to provide our historically marginalized students a dedicated space where they could be their authentic selves and feel a sense of belonging.”

More than 50 students, alumni, and staff from Willamette University’s College of Arts and Sciences, College of Law, and the Atkinson Graduate School of Management attended the event. Organizations represented by alumni included Brainlabs, Intel, Legacy Health, Morgan Stanley, Nike, Oregon Department of Justice, Oregon Department of Transportation, Salem Health, and many more.

Feedback from alumni and students included:

“Getting back together with other alumni and being able to share my experiences and knowledge with the students were the highlights for me!”

“I appreciated the Black and Brown Networking Night because there are not a lot of events like this. Oftentimes I feel intimidated by networking events, but last night I felt comfortable getting out of my comfort zone.”

“Conversations with other students and professionals on how they navigated their careers as people of color were the highlights for me.”

Due to popular demand from students and alumni, Career Development will host the second Black and Brown Networking Night in March 2023.

About Willamette University’s Atkinson Graduate School of Management

Based in Salem, Oregon, we are the premier private university in the Pacific Northwest — the only university in the country that appears on both the US News Best National Liberal Arts Colleges list and the Forbes and Businessweek best business schools lists. With unique proximity to our state's capitol, we are a national leader in civic engagement, delivering an “Only at Willamette” education.

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