Alumnus Smith is a Hit at Career Week Pathways Event

Posted: Thursday, October 26th 2017 at 12:17 PM

Professional portrait of Fred Smith, alumnus 1983Fred Smith (’83 MGT), FCB National Advisory Board member, was the keynote speaker for a Pathways event on October 3, 2017 in Gardner Auditorium. While an undergrad, Smith was a member of the NAU football team.

Smith’s presentation was one of the informative events held during Career Week which focuses on professional development. He covered the value of ‘elevator’ speeches, paying attention to detail, and most importantly, making a good first impression.

To make his point, Smith came into the auditorium wearing a grey wig, a skirt and a white blouse. He told the audience, if there is one thing they would remember from him being there, it was his first impression. He was right.

Smith continued by sharing his story with the group and how he ended up as a top executive in several different companies, including Xerox and America’s Corp. He is a business owner and currently the regional manager in the West for Novatex. He also sparked interest in students with his experience in real estate.

The event continued with helpful tips and tricks on elevator pitches. Smith told the students to speak about what they are passionate about in their 30 second impression. He then moved into a “Buying Cows” exercise that focused on paying attention to details. The example he gave showed how a simple misuse of commas in a written communication with someone could cost a lot of money.

Smith responded to several questions about the career field when the Pathways concluded with a Q&A.

The professional development tools Smith gave to the students were valuable and well used later in the week during the FCB Career Exploration Day. Bernadine Lewis, director of Undergraduate Programs, said Smith brought with him “simple, practical knowledge that students need to know at the beginning of their professional development.”

As an alum, Smith expressed support for the opportunities being offered to students at FCB. He felt his time here included several professional and personal growth options, and he is proud to see what is being offered currently.

An advantage of having Smith as a speaker is his appeal to the diverse community in the FCB. Smith is a successful business man that shows students of minorities that there are no boundaries to their success. His presence and participation in the FCB is both motivational and inspirational.

Students agreed the Smith’s presentation was successful. Lewis chimed in, calling it “edutainment” and an honor to host such an accomplished alumnus.

Categories: fred smith alumni 2017 fall 2017 pathways professional development career week