Jesse Fraga / Assistant News Director
A developing series by FIU’s Office of the President aims to provide an intimate, informal space to network with university professionals such as FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg.
The series, Wrapping up the Week with President Rosenberg, addressed topics including summer jobs, life advice and how to network at FIU.
“There’s a lot of different pathways [at FIU] that can be followed,” said Rosenberg. “A lot of it depends upon the time, availability and circle of networks that the individual has, as well as the willingness of individuals at the university to work with them to figure it out.”
Moderators from the Clubhouse discussion today included Valeria Stevenson, FIU executive director and head of strategic initiatives and projects, and Isabella Corzo, FIU coordinator of administrative services.
Clubhouse, launched in March 2020, which is an audio-based app where panelists hold live conversations and can grant permission for audience members to chime in. Users are able to access the app by invitation only.
Stevenson told PantherNOW, “Since Clubhouse was not widely available and still isn’t, we mostly use it for very informal topics versus university-wide announcements.”
The audience of six — including FIU students, alumni and university professionals — were asked to share experiences of their first summer jobs.
Panelists and audience members tune into Clubhouse discussion, Wrapping Up the Week with Rosenberg – Summer Jobs. Screenshot by Jesse Fraga/PantherNOW.
Audience member and FIU alum Kyrsten Alvarez-Basulto currently works as the FIU social media manager for external relations, but began her career as a host for Radio Disney in Hialeah, Florida.
“It’s funny how we all start somewhere and end up right at FIU,” said Basulto. “[The radio] didn’t get me out of my shyness, but it was pretty cool.”
Corzo called audience member Giovanni Castro, “the king of networking,” for his past experience working for various Florida lawmakers and currently serving as the state and local manager of government affairs for Verizon. He is also a member of the FIU President’s Council.
Like Basulto, Castro also struggles with meeting new people. However, he suggested the best way to obtain a summer job is to branch out and build connections.
“It’s funny you say I’m ‘the king of networking,’ because I think I’m an introvert,” said Castro. “We all have our routines, but there is a myriad especially recently of professionals… that are looking for graduates and young professionals to give advice to, so it really is just getting out of your comfort zone.” said Castro.
Rosenberg recalled what he learned from his first job working for his father’s junkyard.
“The only person who knows you’re introverted or shy is you,” said Rosenberg. “I realized at a certain point that that was my choice. It comes down to self perception and mindfulness.”