Recently, I attended Nanyang Business School’s Fireside Chat for newly admitted students as an Alumni Co-host in the Business Analytics breakout room. This was my third event at Nanyang Technological University ever since I graduated. It felt like I was transported back to the time when I was selecting which university to head to five years ago, having to make an informed choice to cap off my years of formal education.
The post today is about 3 reasons why you should contribute back to the university community after graduation, be it through events, content writing (what I’m doing too), and mentorship. As a business graduate is always a win-win for everyone, and while the listeners gain, I feel I gain a lot as a speaker too!
#1 Being Able to Learn New Perspectives
I realised that one of the benefits to return to my alma mater to do sharings is that I can learn many new perspectives. I came to realise that people of different generations and backgrounds think very differently. I learned about the thought process which goes through the current student’s mind as they look at the next steps of their journey. One question which got me thinking was when thinking about Co-curricular Activities (CCAs) to join, which would be the most helpful in the business context, which of course I responded that there is no hard and fast rule and you are the master of your own ship. However, that did set me thinking of how much forward-thinking the next batch of students seen to be… Or perhaps I’m the only one who had not thought so far ahead when choosing a course, I knew I wanted to run a business and add value to society, which I did run one during my university days!
If you would like to learn about my perspective of university life, do read my graduation reflection post.
#2 Honing Listening and Public Speaking Skills
Another benefit of attending alumni events was honing my listening and public speaking skills. Being placed in a room of eager-eyed prospective students who ask any questions which you can possibly imagine, I found it interesting to have had the chance to thoughtfully formulate original answers to a new audience confidently over time! Over till my third event, I felt that I am improving in terms of my public speaking skills, experimenting with the various ways that I can potentially use to bring a message across.
I remember that back during my days as a Toastmaster, I hear that public speaking is the biggest fear of most people, of which I say yes I’m still fearful that I may make a mistake, but being able to articulate your thoughts clearly is a very important skill that I’m consistently improving on!
#3 Critical Reflection of Your Experiences
I felt that attending an Alumni event was also a chance to critically reflect on my experience. Through the various engagements I had about university life, internships, exchange and curriculum, I had the chance to narrate the experience I had and in the process realise how much of a transformative experience I went through.
One of the experiences I got asked about was whether I was already decided on Business Analytics when I entered university, and I responded that it was an informed choice between two majors, Business Analytics and Marketing.
Another experience was about the Stars Wars in university, which basically means course registration, it was ironic though when I responded that I hardly faced any issues, but when there’s an issue, there was a member in the undergraduate office team to assist, who coincidentally was the moderator in the room!
Thus, these back to school experiences I had removed any Halo effect or contrast effect of one’s experience and allowed me to objectively reflect.
Hope you liked our post today. Do bookmark this site, leave a comment in the section below, and follow us on our LinkedIn page as we look forward to curating new content for you every week.
Thinking of heading to university but can’t get decided? Do read our analysis of the Graduate Employment Survey 2020 here!
Photo Credits: Screenshot with Virtual Background designed by Nanyang Business School