Starting out at Notre Dame, I was an overwhelmed international student who felt somewhat intimidated by what was ahead in South Bend, Indiana. The cold weather, 200-student lectures, and being so far away from home was all very new to me. I remember my first SIBC All-Council meeting, sitting in a red cushioned seat at DeBart 101 not knowing the difference between a financial services company and a management consulting firm, but yet hoping to get on a travel team for any of the projects in front of me.
Since that meeting, I never left SIBC. In large, this was because of the great environment that the Council fostered and the many great relationships that I developed through this platform. SIBC nights became the highlight of my school week, as I discussed how to improve a struggling website’s finances, developed a strategy for an energy company looking to become greener, or created new projects as the STEM division director.
While being President of the Council, one of the greatest things that the board of directors accomplished was launching SIBC’s new philanthropic branch, SIBCares. Here, our goal is to continue to expand the mission of Peace Through Commerce on a very tangible level. In its first year, SIBCares teamed up with the Center for the Homeless and helped develop/teach a lecture series for guests at the Center who were hoping to enter the workforce soon. Here, our members got a chance to give back to the South Bend community by utilizing all of the professional skills that they had learned through SIBC to spread these teachings to those in need. Similarly, we saw a YoY growth of 24% in membership count, a lot of which came from students of non-business backgrounds, and project additions across the majority of our divisions.
SIBC developed my team work capabilities and analytical skills, led me to obtain the contacts and experiences needed to secure a summer internship, and it taught me how to behave in professional settings. On a personal level, SIBC introduced me to some of my closest friends at Notre Dame, and gave me something to look forward to throughout the week.
All in all, being part of the Council made my Notre Dame experience the best it could be. Thank you to the Potenziani family and to Monica Laidig for working tirelessly to make the Council a place everyone can call home at Notre Dame. I am looking forward to seeing what future boards and members are up to within SIBC.