OJA/SJC Career Networking – February 2016

On the 24th of February 2016, the inaugural OJA/SJC Career Networking Evening, a collaboration between the Old Johannian Association and St John’s College, was held at the Johannian Club. The aim of the initiative is three fold;

  • To introduce students to potential career paths, by providing deeper insights into those careers through professionals
  • To give students insights into the companies and industries represented by the different professionals
  • To allow students to network with professionals in their proposed careers and ultimately build life-long career contacts and mentors

This first event hosted nine Old Johannians representing three careers (Chartered Accountancy, law and medicine) and approximately 30 students from Matric and 6th form. The evening was broken into two parts; OJ presentations and the networking thereafter.

The evening began with the Old Johannians being given fifteen minutes per career to talk about what their professional careers are like, what the required pathways are into their professions, the pros and cons of what they do, as well as the various misconceptions surrounding their careers.

This was then followed by the networking part of the evening, where St John’s students were put into small groups (aligned to their career interests) and matched with an Old Johannian in their respective career. This provided students with opportunities to ask the Old Johannians more specific and targeted questions regarding their careers.

Judging by the level of activity and conversation in the room, it was apparent that the students had a lot of questions to ask and the Old Johannians were only too keen to engage. The general feedback was that sessions such as these are very beneficial as they help provide the students with a more realistic picture of what working in the various professions is like.

OJ speakers featured in the above photo:

Back row from left:

Graeme Marais (OJ 2000), Matthew Simpson (OJ 1997), Dr Matthew Gooding (OJ 1999), Dr Simon Lawson (OJ 1992), Percy Ying (OJ 1999)

Front row from left:

Mike Evans (OJ 1970), John McPherson (OJ 1986), Jannie de Villiers (OJ 1999), Marc Hauptfleisch (OJ 1997)

The OJA’s intention is to hold one Career Networking Evening per school term, with the next one focusing on a few additional careers.

If any OJs are keen to take part in this initiative and offer some guidance to the St John’s students in their chosen career, kindly contact me for more info.

Kind regards

Olatunji Pariola

(OJA committee member)