UBAC members recently took part in a behind-the-scenes tour at Norfolk Southern.
“Norfolk Southern’s proximity to Georgia Tech allowed our students to walk out of the classroom and into industry,” said Scheller Business Analytics Center Corporate Engagement Manager Sherri von Behren who arranged the tour. “In a less than 4-minute walk, they were able to see what they learned in the classroom being applied in the real world. I loved that these students got to hear about the importance of Norfolk Southern’s business to the economy and were able to connect the dots in the application of technology to the transportation of vital goods and materials across the U.S.
The students appreciated the chance to tour the headquarters of one of the most expansive rail networks in the country.
“I always enjoy it when companies come to Georgia Tech for interviews and information sessions,” said Caleb Kopitsky, a second-year ME student. “However, I learned so much more about Norfolk Southern’s culture and work environment by getting to actually see the facilities and hear from the employees.”
Led by Norfolk Southern’s University Engagement Manager Craig Conyers and Talent Acquisition Leaders Tori Smith, Kalli Hall, and Jennifer Haggerty, the students got a first-hand look at the Norfolk Southern headquarters building as well as information and tips about what it takes to get hired and build a successful career.
“They did a great job showing us all around the building. I thought it was cool how the building itself exemplifies their culture by providing lots of open spaces for communication and collaboration,” said Nitika Gupta, a UBAC member concentrating in Information Technology Management.
“Their Network Operations Center was especially impressive,” added Grace Jeong, a second-year concentrating in Strategy & Innovation. “Seeing the programs they actually use to oversee things like train safety and logistics was definitely a highlight.”
Several Scheller leaders and approximately 20 UBAC members attended the tour and information session.
“It seems like a very welcoming culture,” said Dillon Roberts, a UBAC member specializing in finance. “The employees who spoke were passionate about Norfolk Southern; you can tell everyone enjoys showing up to work and is proud of what they do and the difference they make.”
After the tour, Conyers took questions from the group, including advice about the ideal qualities they look for from both interns and those interested in full-time careers.
“While you’re in school, grades obviously matter,” said Conyers, “but we also want to see involvement and leadership. I want to see how well you do in a team situation and how you apply the soft skills like good communication and the ability to speak in public. Even if you’re a senior now, it’s not too late; make sure you have club, sports, or capstone involvement to talk about in your interview and showcase those soft skills.”
When asked how to stand out in an interview, he ended with one last insight: “Relay your answers so that you can show you researched the company and can demonstrate why your skills, abilities, and experience will make you a good fit.”
Interested in setting up your own tour or information session with Georgia Tech's talented business analytics students? Check out the BAC's Engage with Us page on our website.