Hawk Talks

Making Professional Development Easy

Brian Ippolito
Brian Ippolito (AE ’92)

Have you ever wondered how the president of your company came to be in that position? Exactly how the chief executive officer climbed the company ladder? The steps senior executives took along their career paths?

Through the Alumni Association Career and Professional Development Committee, chaired by Bob Hoel (BE ’70), now alumni can interact directly with company presidents, CEOs, and senior executives through the Professional Development Series. The committee strives to present different themes, topics, and speakers to alumni looking for career advice and professional development. These Hawk Talks range from business etiquette and the two-hour job search to information security and project management. And best of all, they’re free.

In February committee member Brian Ippolito (AE ’92) spoke about big data and starting a big data company, a topic he’s familiar with as president and CEO of Orbis Technologies.

“These presentations provide an opportunity for our alumni to hear from people who are senior-level professionals and to relate to them in a personal way,” he says. “They’re experts in their fields, and they want to help.”

Ippolito says it can be hard for professionals early in their careers to ask for help, so the committee understands the value of providing Hawk Talks to people who want to take that step. “I’ll consider this series a success if we can convince our audience that there’s a way for them to engage people who are more senior in their career,” he says.

The benefits of the professional development series aren’t only for attendees; committee members are learning their fair share, too.

“This series has challenged us to stay relevant to a whole new generation of alumni,” Ippolito says. “We’re forced to look at what’s important to them. Many of us are at senior levels in our careers, and it’s not always easy to remember the needs and concerns of entry-level or intermediate roles.”

Hawk Talks are just one way Illinois Tech is helping alumni in their careers. The series is archived at alumni.iit.edu/professional-development-series; additional career resources are available at web.iit.edu/career-services/alumni. Email alumni@iit.edu to learn more.

PHOTO: Brian Ippolito

Congratulations, European Alumni

We are happy to announce our newest international alumni effort—the European Alumni Association. Volunteers are still needed to lead chapters in various countries. Contact Charlotte Leroy (LL.M. LAW ’11) at contact@alumni-iit.eu to get involved.

Mark your calendars and celebrate in Paris from June 30–July 2, 2017, at the Global Alumni Gathering, hosted by the European Alumni Association. The event will focus on global challenges of the twenty-first century and will include panel presentations by alumni and university leaders on the topics of water, health, energy, and security.

Visit alumni.iit.edu/paris-2017 for more information.

Global Alumni Gathering

Interested in starting your own affinity group or local chapter? Contact the Office of Alumni Relations at alumni@iit.edu or 800.IIT.ALUM (800.448.2586) to get started today.