Industry Dinner Builds Crucial Business Skills

business / alumni, undergraduate students

On March 1, the Tepper School Undergraduate Economics and Business Administration hosted its annual Etiquette Dinner for undergraduate students, designed to equip students with the knowledge and confidence needed to successfully engage in a business lunch, dinner or networking setting.

Unlike past Etiquette Dinners, in addition to learning which fork to use with a salad course, this year’s event incorporated a networking element. Students were seated at industry-specific tables – consulting, finance, marketing, technology – with alumni in that industry to have a more relevant and targeted learning opportunity.

Forging Connections With Alumni

Current Economics junior Eric Huang was seated at the consulting table where he talked to alumni about his undergraduate experience. “I connected with the alumni guest at my table, as he also graduated not too long ago, and we actually both were taught by some of the same faculty members, Huang said. “ We also connected over similar experiences abroad in the London School of Economics.”

Huang learned the importance of preparing for the case interviews for the consulting industry. He was encouraged by alumni to continue his work and delve deeper into his studies through pursuing a senior Honors thesis.

Learn Networking Skills Outside of the Classroom

As a Business Administration sophomore, Austin Saunders had participated in the annual Etiquette Dinner during his freshman year and has always found the event to open new doors.

“The etiquette dinner provides a unique opportunity for Tepper students to learn about business skills often not taught in the classroom,” Saunders said “At the event, I learned that one of the best ways to network with people is over food. The dinner provided a perfect opportunity to talk to alumni and practice for networking or interviews over a meal.”

Tepper MBA students also attended the event as mentors for the undergraduates. Victoria Lopez (MBA ‘19), who worked in economic development as a management consultant for a local nonprofit provided her own advice to students. “At any stage of your career it is important to remember that first impressions are important, so always be mindful of your interactions with others and not simply your work output.”