There are a variety of ways in which Carlson School alumni and friends play a direct role in molding tomorrow’s business leaders through volunteerism. This National Volunteer Month, the Carlson School is shining a spotlight on some of our most dedicated volunteers and showcasing the good they do for the programs and students they assist.

 

Robert Hill, BSB ‘14, Recruiter and Classroom speaker

1. How did you start getting involved with the Carlson School volunteer program?

We were asked to speak at some of our former professor's classes to give a perspective/give real-world examples, on certain topics the classes were learning about that are in our day-to-day job, which then grew into speaking to more of the classes on similar topics!

2. What has been your most rewarding experience to date?

I think the most rewarding is when you can speak to a class and bring to life things that they do on a daily basis.  For us, that is often related to how they are shopping for their groceries or personal/household care products. It is really fun to see them show interest and be curious in the things that many businesses invest heavily in and that consumers don't notice.  It is rewarding then, when students can start to connect the dots of all the classes they have gone through to see how on the business side, things that they do as consumers come to life.

3. What is one topic that you always discuss with the classes/student groups you speak with?

Similar to the above, being about to put the content in a relatable language and situation.

4. Why do you feel it’s important to give your time to the Carlson School and its students?

As a student it was tremendously helpful to hear from recent grads who talked about their career experience so far. For me, I hope that I am able to help students find what career they are most interested in as they begin discovering their own careers!

 

Emily Mack-Olson, HRIR ‘09, Classroom speaker

1. How did you start getting involved with the Carlson School volunteer program?

I am a Carlson School alumni, and graduated from the MA-HRIR program in 2009. Since that time, I have tried to stay connected with the school, and am currently an active member of the MA-HRIR mentorship program. I got involved with volunteering through our Talent Management group at my current employer, Polaris.  

2. What has been your most rewarding experience to date?

I recently spoke in Professor Connie Wanberg’s classroom, and it was a very rewarding experience. The students were incredibly engaged, and excited to learn more about HR’s role in business. After the presentation, I had several students approach me and say that they had been considering majoring in Human Resources, and hearing my presentation helped to confirm their interest, now understanding the impact that HR has in business. It is a good feeling to know that you can help to influence future business leaders in a positive career direction through volunteer activity.

3. What is one topic that you always discuss with the classes/seminars you speak with?

It is important for students to understand that HR is an integral part of the business, and how that partnership works in an organization. I like to help them connect the Human Resources function with business strategy and results, so usually cover multiple real-life case study examples to make the role of HR more tangible.  

4. Why do you feel it’s important to give your time to the Carlson School and its students?

Having been in their shoes, I know how difficult it can be for students to navigate career choices, and how beneficial it is to interact with mentors and business leaders. I feel it’s important to spend the time to give back, especially since I have had the fortune of so many talented professionals investing their time in me as I have grown in my career. I also gain a lot of personal enjoyment from interacting with students, so it’s a mutually beneficial experience!

 

Interested in learning about volunteer opportunities with the Carlson School? Find out the various ways in which you can get involved.