College of Business excited for increase conference numbers

Mackenzie Nading

The College of Business is busy extending its outreach beyond the walls of Gerdin. The college, along with the Women’s Leadership Consortium, the department of women’s and gender studies and the ISU Division of Student Affairs, has been planning the second annual Young Women in Business Conference. The conference’s goal is to introduce high school girls to careers in the business field before graduation.

“The conference is really to increase awareness. There are many areas of business that most high-school students never even think about as a career option,” said Kayla Christensen, organizer of the Young Women in Business Conference. “We want to educate them on the opportunities in business that are out there for them to take advantage of.”

The conference is from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday in the Gerdin Business Building.

The girls who attend the conference have an opportunity to interact with industry professionals, faculty and current ISU students. They also will be exposed to majors and industries they may not have known existed as well as getting to experience Iowa State’s campus. This year the conference is going farther than just appealing to high school girls.

“We’ve added sessions specifically for parents, high-school teachers and guidance counselors who are attending the conference with their daughters or students. They will be meeting with ISU staff to help them learn more about the college-planning process and all the opportunities available for their students at ISU,” Christensen said.

The conference also provides an interactive way for current business students to get involved.

“One of the conference highlights is our female student business panel in the afternoon, where current students have a question-and-answer session with conference attendees. We also have current students hosting our professional visitors and helping throughout the day,” Christensen said.

The popularity of the conference has greatly increased for its second year. Last year, the total attendance was about 75. This year, 225 high school students, parents and faculty have registered to attend.