King’s Academy, December 6, 2016 - For the first time in the history of King’s Academy, a group of alumni have hosted a career and university forum for juniors and seniors, with the aim of mentoring students and providing them with useful advice about university and career choices.
Seventeen alumni from the classes of 2010, 2011 and 2012 returned to King’s this week to share their university and work experiences with more than 40 juniors and seniors. The event kicked off with an alumni-led introduction in the Lecture Hall and a keynote address by Ghassan Gammoh’ 10, who is a faculty member in the Department of History and Social Studies.
“I hope this event will be the start of a new relationship between our alumni and students,” said Gammoh.
“King’s gave us so much and this is one of our ways of giving back to our school.”
Depending on their field of work, alumni were assigned to five panels: education, government, entrepreneurship, NGOs and communications, development and law. Students rotated among the panels, while alumni shared their diverse university and career experiences. Many panelists discussed challenges faced, majors chosen, and opportunities pursued. Alumni also offered insights on specific disciplines and tips regarding job interviews and university life.
In the communications, development and law panel, for example, several graduates emphasized the importance of pursuing internships while at university, as well as establishing close relationships with professors and honing writing, debating and critical thinking skills.
Alumni also provided advice on succeeding in first jobs after university.
“Early in your career, be prepared to do anything that may be asked of you and to learn something new every day,” said Suhayb Al-Jawhari ’11, who worked for private nonprofit organizations before entering the film industry.
Students were eager to learn about particular universities and the benefits of graduating from King’s, asking questions regarding university courses and how King’s prepares students for life after graduation. They were also curious to hear about potential job opportunities in certain fields and countries.
“The alumni provided us with information that we don’t have and they gave us extremely useful advice about university and career life,” said Yuxuan Cao '18.
“It’s great to meet a lot of people who share similar experiences but are also further ahead in life,” said Katherine Jonsson '17. “There’s an entire King’s community out there.”
The event concluded with a lively reception in the Orange Courtyard, providing an additional opportunity for students and alumni to mingle and exchange contact information.
“We didn't have this opportunity when we were students at King’s, so we want to provide current students with the opportunity to learn from people who were in their shoes,” said Malik Jabouri’ 11.