Business Week 2021: Students Connecting and Networking on Flagler’s Campus

2020 Lion's Cage first place team member, Sarah Schark. Photo by Flagler College News.

By Matthew Dutton

Business Week at Flagler College is a chance for students to connect with experienced professionals and learn the ins and outs of the business world.

The events will run from March 1-4 and this year’s theme is “The Future is Now: Technology and Business,” which is centered around the many ways technology is integrated into the world of business.

Business Week provides multiple opportunities for students to network with real-world professionals in the business industry, said Megan Austin, the donor engagement coordinator who works with the business advisory board.

As a Flagler alumna, Austin is familiar with the atmosphere that Business Week creates on campus. “I think the thing that makes it most exciting is the energy that is around the events,” said Austin. “When you have professionals that are investing in a week-long event and pouring into students, that to me is super special.”

Despite the COVID-19 restrictions on the events, she said turnout should be a success.

“We’re still going to be in-person but there will also be virtual options for students. Now people can participate and interact online without having to physically be there,” she said.

Planning for Business Week started in Fall of 2020 by faculty members including Charles White, the program director for business administraton. Despite this being his first year at Flagler, White used his past experiences with business event planning to bring similar opportunities to Flagler.

“Business week is a window opportunity for students to listen to speakers and meet new people,” said White. “It even results in internships and job opportunities.”

White said one of the main goals for the week is student engagement.

Susan Hammond, a freshman international business major, said she is excited to participate in her first Business Week.

“I think Business Week will be a good opportunity to get to know the business professors and get a feel of the business realm,” Hammond said.

Some upperclassmen, such as Martin Burnette, said they participated in multiple events last year and have a sense of the purpose behind the week.

“The real value of it is that you get your name out there and you get to meet CEOs from the area.”

He also played a huge role in the week’s most popular events, the Saints Showcase followed by the Lion’s Cage.

Saints Showcase is a chance for students and/or groups to pitch business proposals which are then voted upon by the student body. The top proposals then move on to Lion’s Cage, a Shark Tank-like competition where each group gets one minute to pitch their ideas to a panel of judges for a chance to win cash prizes.

A member of the first-place team of last year’s Lion’s Cage, Sarah Schark, said the event was like no other.

“I feel like the experience gave me a glimpse of what real-world, professional interaction would be like and really set me up for all the interviews I did shortly after,” said Schark. “The event really gives students a chance to step out of their comfort zone and interact with professionals all while displaying their amazing ideas!”

For more information on the 2021 Business Week events and how to get involved, click the link to learn more:

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