Twenty-four students. Seventeen companies. Nine days. Two cities. Countless connections.
Those are the numbers behind the third annual Carey Business School China Trek, organized by the Pan-Asian Career Association (PACA) and Carey’s Career Development Office. From January 9 to the 16, Carey students, led by Christy Murray, executive director of Career Development, visited both Shanghai and Beijing, meeting with representatives from a diverse group of companies as well as attending several alumni events featuring recent Carey graduates now working and living in China.
“This was our biggest group ever,” said Murray. “Most companies’ recruitment starts in the fall, so this was a good time for students to visit, learn about these organizations’ mission and culture, explore potential opportunities, and for these companies to get to know our students, in turn.”
Employer treks provide students with opportunities to travel and engage with business leaders, learn about key industries, and meet Carey alumni. In 2018, more than 230 students participated in 17 treks to local, domestic, and international employers.
Several weeks after their return, the Carey students held a “reflection session,” open to the Carey community, to discuss their experiences and chief takeaways. Students comprising a special panel and support included Haichao Cui (moderator), Qianli Zhou, Yiyang Lan, Lucas Lin, Yuanbei Tang, Yi Yang, Li Qian, and Kaiji Ren. The entire student team represented a number of degree programs, including the Global MBA, MS in Finance, MS in Marketing, and MS in Business Analytics and Risk Management.
Among the firms visited were worldwide industry leaders Roche (pharmaceuticals and diagnostics), Proctor & Gamble (consumer health and personal care products), L’Oréal (cosmetics), Bloomberg (financial and media data and analytics), PricewaterhouseCoopers (accounting and consulting), Disney (multinational mass media and entertainment), Daimler (luxury automobiles and commercial vehicles), Nestlé (food and drink), Accenture (consulting and professional services), and Roland Berger (consulting). In addition, students met with representatives from rising Chinese firms such as DJI (commercial and civilian drones); CITIC Securities (China’s largest full-service bank); Hejun Consulting (one of the largest consulting firms in China); Didi Chuxing Technology (ride sharing and artificial intelligence); Baidu Inc. (internet services and artificial intelligence, one of the largest companies of its kind in the world); and Tencent Holdings Limited (multinational investments).
Students also met with numerous alumni in both cities, who provided valuable insight into career choices and opportunities. One of the biggest takeaways was that a Carey Business education was applicable to many disciplines, not just in a particular field of study, so it is advantageous to keep one’s options – and imagination – open to new possibilities.
“Before the trek, I was only looking for jobs in the investment banking field,” said MS in Finance student Li Qian. “After visiting companies like Roche and Daimler, I found that I can work for many firms because as long as you have the relevant skill sets, you can find a great job and be a game changer to your new employer.”
“It’s important not just to pursue big names [of companies],” added MS in Marketing student Yi Yang, one of the panelists, in making connections and exploring opportunities. “You need to know yourself, know the companies in which you’re interested.”
The Career Development Office organizes two types of treks each year. Student organization-led treks are initiated and planned by student groups with support from the Career Development Office. Timing, location, and employers are determined by student trek leaders. Signature treks are initiated and planned by the Career Development Office and a selected trek leader and take place in January.
During the 2017-2018 academic year, Career Development Office collaborated with nine student organizations to plan 10 employer treks, visiting 35 companies in New York, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and in Beijing and Shanghai, China. In January 2019, CDO coordinated eight signature treks to New York City, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., and Beijing and Shanghai. That month alone, 113 student participants visited 48 employers.
Past employer treks have met with such companies as Morgan Stanley, Exelon, GE, Microsoft, Bank of America, Deloitte, Novartis, A.T. Kearney, JD.com, Holy Cross Hospital, Mount Sinai Hospital, Facebook, Ideo, Autodesk, and many others.
For more information on Carey Business School employer treks, click here.