SUNY New Paltz Women's Leadership Summit

SUNY New Paltz Women's Leadership Summit
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Sample discussion questions

Overcoming obstacles and uncovering career opportunities in a changed world

  1. What should students be doing right now that will help them land their first jobs in the middle of a pandemic and slowly recovering economy?
  2. What do employers really want from college graduates and how do I get them to notice me now?
  3. Where could I look to discover unadvertised opportunities?
  4. What other skills can I utilize to get my foot in the door and gain some initial experience?
  5. Where can I find good “virtual networking” opportunities?

Remote Work

  1. How COVID-19 has changed the traditional work environment and tips for successfully working remotel?

Early Career/First Job

  1. How did you set yourself apart and secure a competitive job opening?
  2. How did you succeed as a female in a male-dominated field (and vice versa)?
  3. What do students need to know to land their “dream jobs” and be successful?
  4. What do future bosses want job seekers to know but may not have time to tell them?
  5. Did you have a mentor? How did s/he help you excel in your profession and teach you how to work with others?
  6. What are some of the career opportunities for students majoring in ____ that I may not be familiar with? (Business, Education, Fine and Performing Arts, Liberal Arts & Sciences, Science and Engineering,)
  7. At some point in your undergraduate studies, did you have to balance unpaid internships with paid work? If so, what advice would you give to students currently doing this?
  8. As an undergraduate, were there any summer experiences/internships that influenced your career choices?
  9. Was there a particular professor who excited you about a specific field or profession?


  1. What are some of the challenges faced by young professionals in today’s work force?
  2. Can one make a career out of passion and personality?
  3. How do you continue to sharpen your skills and stay competitive? How do you follow industry trends?
  4. How would you describe the culture of your current workplace?


  1. What should students do that will help them make a successful transition from college to career?
  2. What advice can you give about thinking strategically and using transferable skills to switch careers?
  3. What was the turning point for you either at New Paltz, or at your first, second, maybe third job? In other words, how would you describe your “A-HA!” moment


  1. What is your advice for networking and making the right connections in the virtual world?
  2. What is your go-to ice breaker when meeting new people?
  3. How do you approach/manage conflict in the work place?
  4. What kind of social media advice would you recommend that won’t turn off a perspective employer?
  5. What’s your advice on bridging the work gap between generations?

Outside of the Office

  1. What are your tricks for staying recharged and focused?
  2. What was the best piece of advice someone ever gave you?
  3. What was the worst piece of advice someone ever gave you?
  4. What is the best piece of advice that you would give these students right now?
  5. What mistakes have you made, how did you handle them, and what did you learn?
  6. How did you open yourself up to new experiences?
  7. What’s your advice on handling financial well-being and transitioning between college and post graduation expenses?

Current Events

  1. Has the #MeToo Movement affected any changes in your particular work environment?
  2. How would you recommend handling sexual harassment in the workplace?
  3. How would you handle bullying in the workplace?
  4. How do handle office politics in the work place?