How to Communicate with Alumni

During the year at the Freeman School, I attended four school sponsored events in New York, Houston, Chicago, and New Orleans. We call it Freeman Days because it is a networking event where Freeman alumni, coming from different locations and different companies, get together to say hello and communicate information. Freeman Days is no doubt an excellent opportunity for graduates to meet people and get to know what’s going on in the job market. Let me start from the tips for the first meet.

  • If you only have two minutes, introduce yourself and ask for business card. Remember the contact information matters. Even if you fail to get the email address, you should write down the name of alumni such that you can keep conversation going on via LinkedIn. Don’t worry! I’m sure my SuperWoman Jada will tell you how to use LinkedIn very soon.
  • If you have five minutes or more, please hold on and never rush to make an elevator speech. My experience tells me it would be better to know how to start a conversation. Talking something about school life is not a bad idea, since you are both from Tulane. Or you can say something about the travelling experiences in the States. The point here is that you should have alumni glad to speak with you, and make the conversation keep moving on. After that, you can transfer the topics to job searching or career life. The questions you can ask are like “How did you find your first job?” “How do you like you work?” People like to talk about themselves. And from these stories they tell, you can imagine the life (of course finance!) you are going to have in the future.

First meet, as a starting point, is very important. However, you should keep in touch with alumni afterwards. For example, I emailed some of alumni after Freeman Days, telling them my career goal, and asking for suggestions. Some replied, while others didn’t. Don’t be upset. That always happens to me! You can wait for a week time and send another email to follow up. I also said hello to them when holidays were coming like Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chinese New Year, and Easter. The point here is to let alumni know you, remember you, and understand what’s going on with you. They will help! Trust me. Most of alumni I met are so so good and helpful!!! Just talk to them. Don’t be shy.

Last but not the least! I am really thankful to Jada, Leonard, and the CMC. Speaking with Jada, I felt myself full of power and knew what to do next. Jada always came up with great ideas that showed me another way to get to the point. I appreciate the endless efforts CMC made to help me understand what I really want in my career path. Freeman Days opened a window for me to learn the real life in the financial industry. I am so proud that I used to work for CMC, being a member of such a brilliant crew. Below is my contact information. Please email me if you have any questions. I am so glad to help!

Yoyo Jiang