Alumni, Students and Faculty Come Together for the First Annual Johnson Energy Connection
JEC was designed to bring alumni working in the energy industry back to campus and provide a platform for them to share thoughts and experiences about their careers in the energy industry.
By Brianna Tufts, JGSM ’11
Over the past few years our need for energy and our reliance on it for nearly every aspect of our lives has increased. This has been reflected in the student community at Johnson, with a marked increase every year of students interested in careers in this industry. Given the strong alumni network in traditional energy companies and the increasing presence of Johnson alumni in alternative energy companies, there has also been a growing chorus for an annual forum to facilitate a dialogue between alumni, students and faculty. This was the genesis for the Johnson Energy Connection.
In October, students, alumni, faculty and staff gathered for the first annual Johnson Energy Connection (JEC). JEC was designed to bring alumni working in the energy industry back to campus and provide a platform for them to share thoughts and experiences about their careers in the energy industry. The event also provided students an opportunity to interact with alumni on a one-on-one basis, learn more about the companies they represent and get advice on the job search. Alumni from the 80s, 90s, and 00s returned and offered perspectives on current renewable and traditional energy technologies as well as future development issues. Companies represented included American Governor, Corning, Chevron Energy Solutions, Widetronix, Acciona, GE, Maxim Group and EnerNOC.
The consensus from students was overwhelmingly positive. Nupur Pande MBA’11 reflected “Johnson Energy Connection not only provided current students an opportunity to interact with our strong alumni base who are in high-impact roles in the energy sector, but also served as a platform to discuss some of the burning issues and trends in this important industry.” While students pursuing careers in the energy industry often attend energy conferences hosted by other schools, JEC offered a unique opportunity to connect with Johnson alumni and classmates.
The Johnson Energy Connections was a joint effort of many internal groups including the Energy Club, the SGE Club, the Office of Alumni Affairs and Development, the Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise, the Career Management Center and Chevron. The success of the event was a direct result of strong alumni interest in the event and once again highlights the valued relationship between alumni and students at the Johnson School. The organizing team hopes that the success of this year’s event will help create a new Johnson School tradition with increasing participation every year.