Although it is not yet summer, Professor Jody Jones is already providing students with a small holiday from the textbooks. On April 8, Oklahoma Christian University students will have the opportunity to hear three distinguished businessmen speak during a finance panel.
Gene Dillard, Don Millican and Lyndon Taylor will make up the panel. Each businessman has a diverse background and unique career path in the finance industry.
Even thought their backgrounds and paths are different, they do share one thing in common.
"All three men have strong faith convictions, which are not always easy to find in the business world," Jones said.
The students will have the opportunity to listen to these men speak during a 50 minute discussion time where each speaker will share their career path. They will also speak about their current position in the finance world.
"Even though the three men are professionals in the finance industry, they each have a job in a different realm of finance," Jones said.
The panel will help students get a better grasp of what their career path might look like after graduation.
"This discussion will give students new thoughts and options about their own career paths after college," Jones said. "The students will also gain some real world expectations of their career after graduation."
Senior finance major Patrick Grewe recognizes the opportunity this panel presents for himself and fellow classmates.
"I think many times students hold incorrect views or opinions on what the working world will be like," Grewe said. "Some students are able to gain insight through internships or part time jobs, but I personally am unable to during school because I am on the track team; I'm sure there are other students who are unable to work the hours demanded by an internship."
During the discussion, the three men will also express their opinions on current events. They will share advice they think would be helpful for students who are approaching graduation. Eriola Winebarger, who will graduate this month with a degree in finance and information system, is interested in the advice they will give students who are in the process of a job search.
The discussion will be followed with time for the students to ask questions. Some questions will come from the discussion, but other questions will have already been thought through by students before the panel begins.
After the lunch, some of the students will stay and eat lunch with the panelists. This will allow the students to converse with these men and ask more questions.
"In the professional world, business lunches are common, and students will need to have the skills to network and the ability to glean information from other professionals," Grewe said.
In addition to receiving important insight and advice and the opportunity to ask questions, the students will also have the opportunity to establish relationships.
"Arranging this panel and inviting these men to campus provides the students with some people to use as mentors or role models," Jones said.
Even the students know the importance of relationships and connections.
"The panel will hopefully allow us to absorb some information and establish a connection between the professional world and OC," Grewe said.
Jones' idea and planning of this panel is sure to be appreciated by many students. It is to be a valuable opportunity and experience.