Prashant Gupta, one of the 320+ University of Cincinnati students registered for The Big College Event (TBCE), is working towards a Master’s degree in computer science in addition to studying entrepreneurship at the Carl H. Lindner College of Business. Attending TBCE to network, look for internships, and explore what Cincinnati has to offer, Prashant was pleasantly surprised by the production put on by the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber and the Cincinnati community.
"It was great to know the things to do in Cincinnati and amazing interacting with the members of the startup ecosystem. I discovered some internship opportunities and it was indeed the ‘BIG’ college event! This was really thoughtful of UC to partner with USA regional chamber and provide students with such an amazing opportunity."
The Big College Event, hosted by the Cincinnati Chamber, took place on Thursday, October 19, 2017 from 4-9pm at the Duke Energy Convention Center. The purpose of The Big College Event is to connect college/university students to every facet of their community. Prashant was only one of the hundreds of UC students who took advantage this exciting event.
The exhibitor hall featured four corners, each designed to provide unique opportunities to help students connect with people, work experiences, future careers, and their home according to the Cincinnati Chamber website.
At no cost to students, they could match individual passions with several of Cincinnati’s young professional groups including: Cincinnati Youth Collaborative, Stepping Stones, Inc., 4C for Children, Make a Change Foundation Young Professionals, United Way of Greater Cincinnati, and more. This gives students the opportunity to discover ways to get involved on a local level with organizations whose values and interests are consistent with theirs.
Students could also engage with established companies such as Amazon, Tata Consulting, Kroger, EY, RDI, Mercy Health, and Western & Southern Financial Group to learn more about internship/co-op opportunities and resume building experiences.
TBCE brought a vibe much different than traditional career fairs. There was a DJ setting the mood with fun and upbeat music, a mini Taste of Cincinnati expo, an “Ask a Cincinnatian” booth, and promotion of upcoming local entertainment. It was definitely a scene college students wanted to be a part of and beyond the cool vibe, offered so much more for personally and professionally developing a young person.
Many UC students reported being specifically interested and impressed with the #StartupCincy presence. From incubators and accelerators to local startups, “Startup Row,” labeled by event organizers, was united and thriving. Cintrifuse, The Brandery, OCEAN Accelerator, Aviatra Accelerator, and Hamilton Mill were a few of the many #StartupCincy partners in attendance. The StartupUC Student Incubator is proud to have been a part of this collaboration to educate and inspire college/university students.
Tom Dalziel, Executive Director of the Center for Entrepreneurship & Commercialization, attended TBCE and was overwhelmed by the collaboration of the city. “The resources, the jobs, the startup presence. All of this collaboration was for the students. I’m delighted to be a part of it.”
Jill P. Meyer, president and CEO of the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber offers her take on UC’s participation in organizing TBCE. "The University of Cincinnati was among the first to lead the charge for a large-scale college event, bringing together students from all of our regional universities to experience a taste of all that the Cincinnati region has to offer," said Meyer.
"By making The Big College Event a campus-wide priority, the University of Cincinnati is enhancing the university experience for its students by showing them the larger community that they now are part of and where they can build their futures."