College of Business & Technology

guest speaker

Professional Development Series • September 8 - 27, 2016

The Professional Development Series is one of the many ways administrators, faculty, staff, employers, alumni, and the community support the personal and professional growth of CBT students. The series offers an array of sessions to CBT students in order to prepare them for the job search and a successful career in business. Students have an opportunity to attend sessions on networking, professional dress, résumé building, interviewing, social media, dining etiquette, leadership, and student organization involvement. Students can also interact with CBT alumni and employers during panel discussions.

Registration Information

Space is limited. To secure your seat, register today!

students shaking hands

Additional Information

  • Please be sure to bring your WIU ID to each session to record your attendance.
  • University photographers and videographers will be present at many of the College of Business and Technology Professional Development Series sessions. By registering, you are agreeing to the use of your photo as a participant for use in all forms of media (including the Internet). If you prefer to not have your image used, kindly let the photographer or videographer present know.


Becky Mahr, Coordinator - CBT Professional Development Series
Office: Stipes Hall 414N
Phone: (309) 298-1430

Professional Development Series Schedule

Thursday, September 8

School of Agriculture Alumni/Employer Panel

Take advantage of this opportunity to connect with career professionals who can inspire you and give you insider tips for career success in the agricultural field. Learn what they recommend you do now to be prepared for your job search.

  • 3:00 - 4:45 p.m., Stipes Hall 121

Monday, September 12

Career Fair Preparation

Presented by Michelle Howe, Assistant Director, WIU Career Development Center

With the proper preparation, career fairs are a great way to meet a large number of employers in a short amount of time! Whether you have been to a career fair or not, this presentation will help you make a positive impression by knowing what to do before, during, and after the fair: clarify your goals, research organizations, prepare an elevator speech, decide what to take with you, dress to impress, know how to “work the floor,” and understand the importance of following up with employers.

Two available session times.

  • 9:00 - 9:50 a.m., Stipes Hall 121
  • 10:00 - 10:50 a.m., Stipes Hall 121
Your Digital Footprint

Presented by Jill Myers, Director, WIU School of Law Enforcement & Justice Administration

What you share, who you share it with, and the extent of your connection with others will influence the size of your digital footprint. Much of your digital footprint is left through the use of social media. This is where many people spend a lot of time and may not be as aware of the ramifications. Take control of your digital footprint in terms of what you post and the sites you enter as well as limiting the amount of information you provide online. Think about your connection to others and what they share when they are online. Remember that nothing is private, and things can be traced back to you. Make sure that what is online is the type of reputation you can live with for many years to come.

  • 11:00 - 11:50 a.m., Stipes Hall 121

Tuesday, September 13

The Art of Networking

Presented by Laura Swanson Leezer, Senior Vice President and Corporate Business Development, Citizens Bank

Networking is one of the most important, if not the most important, activities that job-seekers and business professionals need to master to be truly successful. Networking is about building relationships by learning things about other people. If you want to be good at networking, be interested in people. Learn what to ask and what not to ask. Then watch your circle of friends and acquaintances grow as you put these skills to work at the Networking Social.

  • 3:30 - 4:45 p.m., University Union Lamoine Room
  • Professional Dress Preferred/Casual Business Dress Acceptable – No Jeans or Shorts
Networking Social

This networking event is the jumping-off point for starting professional relationships. Take advantage of this opportunity to practice your networking skills with community business leaders. One connection can open many doors.

  • 5:00 p.m., University Union Lamoine Room
    (light refreshment provided)
  • Professional Dress Preferred/Casual Business Dress Acceptable – No Jeans or Shorts

Wednesday, September 14

Farm to Table – A Business Built to Serve

Presented by Julie-Anne Pickett and Margaret Ovitt, Macomb Food Cooperative

Do you know where the food you eat comes from? The farm-to-table movement has risen due to changes in attitudes about food safety, food freshness, food seasonality, and small-farm economics. According to the Macomb Food Cooperative, “a food co-op can refer to many things, but we want our co-op to be an actual grocery store started, owned, and run by its member owners.” Learn about the creation of the Macomb Food Cooperative, how it operates, and the benefits of becoming a member owner. Take control of the food you eat!

  • 12:00 - 12:50 p.m., Stipes Hall 121
Meet the Firms

Meet the Firms is a unique career fair in which students majoring in accountancy, finance, and information systems have an opportunity to speak one on one with employers who are specifically looking to fill job openings and internships in these disciplines. This event provides a great opportunity for students to network with firm representatives. For more information and registration, visit the BAP Meet the Firms web page.

  • 1:00 - 4:00 p.m., University Union Brattain Lounge

Thursday, September 15

Writing Effective Job Search Correspondence – From Lemons to Lemonade

Presented by Kim Matteson, Nationally Certified Resume Writer/Owner, KWM Resume and Career Solutions

Get the advice you need from 1 of less than 40 nationally certified resume writers in the nation! Ms. Matteson has over 10 years of experience in career services. In addition to being a nationally certified résumé writer, she is certified in career coaching, LinkedIn writing, and interview coaching. Whether you are writing your resume for the first time or you are updating your résumé (bring a copy with you), find out what you need to do to make sure your resume and cover letter are effective!

Two available session times.

  • 9:30 - 10:45 a.m., Stipes Hall 121
  • 12:30 - 1:45 p.m., Stipes Hall 121
Etiquette Dinner

Presented by Susan Creasey, Assistant Professor, WIU Management and Marketing Department

If your dining includes a drive-thru, couch, or TV, you probably need a refresher course in proper etiquette at the table. Table manners play an important part in making a favorable impression. The purpose of the etiquette dinner is to make you feel comfortable, not uncomfortable. Dining etiquette is based on courtesy, comfort, and common sense, providing a tool to help you interact with others.

Reservations are required and cost is $10. Please pay with cash or check and register at time of payment in the College of Business and Technology (CBT) Dean's office in Stipes Hall 101.

  • 5:00 - 7:00 p.m., University Union Lamoine Room
  • Professional Dress Preferred/Casual Business Dress Acceptable – No Jeans or Shorts

Monday, September 19

Dress for Success

Presented by Shanna M. Bruer, Assistant Professor, WIU Management and Marketing; and Johathan Devereueawas, Instructor, WIU Economics and Decision Sciences

"You never get a second chance to make a first impression." How you present yourself is a significant factor in creating your personal and your company's image. Your professional presence, the way you come across to others, is created by the way you dress and groom yourself. An appropriate appearance demonstrates respect for you, others, and the situation. This workshop will help you ensure that your image and the first impression you create is "polished!"

Two available session times.

  • 1:00 - 1:50 p.m., Women (Stipes Hall 121) Men (Stipes Hall 501)
  • 2:00 - 2:50 p.m., Women (Stipes Hall 121) Men (Stipes Hall 501)

Tuesday, September 20

Unlock Your Potential – Learn to Lead

Moderated by Joe Dobson, Professor, WIU Management and Marketing Department

They say that leaders are born, not made. While it is true that some people are born leaders, some leaders are born in the midst of adversity. It might not be easy for you to take the lead, as you will need to make decisions and face challenges, but it can become natural and rewarding. Understand the critical responsibilities of the role of a leader: create leadership strategies that engage people and yield higher levels of performance by developing actionable plans to address your most significant leadership challenges.

  • 11:00 a.m. - 12:15 p.m., Stipes Hall 121
Ready, Set, Interview – Put Your Best Foot Forward

Presented by Rachel Walker, HR – Recruitment Lead, Circle 8 Logistics

Interviews can be scary, but they don’t have to be. Gain an understanding of the job search process through the eyes of an employer: planning, recruiting, interviewing, and hiring the right person for the right job. Learn how to build rapport, emphasize your skills, overcome objections, and motivate the interviewer to hire you!

  • 2:00 - 3:15 p.m., Stipes Hall 121

Wednesday, September 21

Supply Chain Management Day

This event includes an afternoon of informal meet-and-greet opportunities with company representatives. The day also includes presentations by many industry leaders in the Supply Chain Management field with information about possible career and internship opportunities. For more information and registration, visit the SCM Day web page.

  • 12:00 - 4:30 p.m., University Union Grand Ballroom
  • Dinner with employer representatives, students, and faculty/staff, 5:00 - 7:00 p.m., University Union Lamoine Room (Reservations Required)
Employer Panel

Engineering, Engineering Technology, Construction Management, Graphic Communication, and Instructional Design Technology Focused

Join a group of employers for a panel discussion about what they look for in a successful engineering, engineering technology, construction management, graphic communication, and/or instructional design technology candidate. Take advantage of this opportunity to get the information you need to be successful in your job search!

  • 12:00 - 12:50 p.m., Knoblauch Hall 105

Thursday, September 22

Personal Finance – Life Just Got Real

Presented by Ryan Riggins, Assistant Vice President-Lending, MidAmerica National Bank

Starting a new job after graduation usually presents new financial challenges as you figure out how to navigate housing, transportation, food, clothing, insurance, debt/loans, retirement savings, professional demands, and a social life. Take control of your money before you receive your first paycheck. Set goals, implement plans, and apply the strategies and tips shared in this session to find your financial footing.

  • 9:30 - 10:45 a.m., Stipes Hall 121

Presented by Randy Kowalski, Deputy Director, Office of Entrepreneurship, Innovation & Technology, Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity

Do you dream about becoming a successful entrepreneur? Learn why you should become an entrepreneur in Illinois!

  • 12:30 - 1:45 p.m., Stipes Hall 121
Negotiating Pay

Presented by Bruce Western, HRM Instructor, WIU Management and Marketing Department

Are you shy, intimidated, or uncomfortable talking to an employer about pay? Successful negotiation is based on preparation and patience. Learn to anticipate what you may need to know when you speak with any potential employer about compensation.

  • 2:00 - 3:15 p.m., Stipes Hall 121

Tuesday, September 27

News You Can Use

Presented/Moderated by Rajah Maples, News Anchor/Multi-Media Journalist/Producer, KHQA

Do you read a newspaper or news website on a daily basis? As a citizen, you have a need to be informed about the world around you. As a business professional, you have a responsibility to know about the world around you. Sometimes it is difficult to see how you or a business are affected by current events. Understand how to use the news to help you both personally and professionally.

  • 12:30 - 1:45 p.m., Stipes Hall 121

Upcoming University Events

Note: Attendance will not be taken at these events as part of the CBT Professional Development Series.

Study Abroad Fair - Wednesday, September 14

10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m., University Union Grand Ballroom

Visit with a number of representatives from various study abroad programs, and get scholarship information. Registration is not required.

Contact the Office of Study Abroad for additional information.

WIU Quad Cities Campus Fall Career Fair - Thursday, September 29

1:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. – Riverfront Campus, 3300 River Drive, Moline, IL 61265

View the WIU Career Fair web page for additional information.

WIU Macomb Campus Fall Career and Internship Fair - Tuesday, October 4

10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. – University Union Grand Ballroom

View the WIU Career Fair web page for additional information.

School of Agriculture Career Fair - Wednesday, October 5

9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. – University Union Grand Ballroom

The Ag Career Fair is specifically designed to focus on a variety of agriculture career opportunities.

View the School of Agriculture Career Fair web page for additional information.