Virtual Networking Series Expands Reach as it Connects Students with Alumni

Thursday, March 11


By Dzevida Sadikovic

When Cronkite Career Services launched its monthly virtual networking series last fall, the team was searching for a creative way to connect current Cronkite students with successful alumni through Zoom.

Dubbed “The 4:15,” the virtual series has now connected almost 30 alumni with Cronkite students and has drawn the attention of other ASU colleges looking to forge similar relationships.

“It’s exceeded expectations because students connect with alumni, alumni share first-hand career knowledge and tips with students, and others on campus are now looking at this format to profile university alumni,” Wong said.

“The 4:15” series started with Zoom calls that offered an opportunity to connect with Cronkite alumni across the U.S. The idea was to feature alumni who are working in interesting and exciting jobs, and have them talk about their current job and the path it took to get there, he said.

“We did not know if it would work, but feedback from current students and featured alumni has been positive,” Wong said.

Each hour-long event features four alumni speaking in 15-minute windows.

The series has allowed students to learn what it takes to work for companies such as NBC, NASA, The Washington Post, Reuters, Access Hollywood and Disney Studios.

The students have heard from political reporters, public affairs specialists, sports anchors, international correspondents, digital producers, polling editors, branding and advertising professionals, among others.

“These Q&A interviews with Cronkite Nation are real-life, quick-hitting information give-and-takes to have current students aspire to certain careers and to connect with our wonderful and successful Cronkite Nation alumni,” Wong said.

Career Services wants to grow the audience and include a diverse range of experience, jobs and ethnicity among the future speakers. With 12,000 Cronkite Nation alumni, there will be plenty of fascinating alumni to profile.

The next “4:15” will take place on Wednesday, March 31 at 4:15 p.m. AZ. On the call: Tarik Flannagan, segment producer for Dr. Oz and former producer for ABC News; Carolina Bermudez, host at Carolina Bermudez with Greg T in the Morning in New York City, New York; Dominique Omahen, production management executive for Telepictures in Los Angeles, Calif.; Brandon Mendoza, editorial research manager for the National Football League.