Learning on the Geaux: Professional Conferences

July 11, 2023

Professional conferences enhance the academic experience for undergraduates in the E. J. Ourso College of Business. In addition to gaining knowledge outside the classroom, students can practice networking skills, connect with professionals and peers from other universities, explore career paths, and gain inspiration from new ideas.

Highlights from recent conferences demonstrate how LSU business students benefit from learning on the geaux.

The Institute of Internal Auditors 2023 Global Student Conference 

LSU business students at internal audit conference

Photo (left to right): Anthony Benton (BS ISDS), JC Russell (BS ISDS), Brisa Gawlikowski (BS Entrepreneurship), Lydia Lafleur, Jewel Lewis (BS Accounting), William Anguiano (BS Accounting), and Joshua Kamara (BS Management)

In April, six students from the LSU Center for Internal Auditing & Cybersecurity Risk Management (LSUCIA&CRM) attended The Institute of Internal Auditors 2023 Global Student Conference. Held in Orlando, the conference attracted more than 100 internal auditing students from around the world.

Attendees connected with professionals, learned the importance of becoming an effective internal auditor, and gained strategies to meet the expectations of current educators and future employers. They also had the remarkable opportunity to gain real-world experience by examining the business side of Walt Disney World during an immersive case study. 

"I had the chance to participate in various workshops and a case study competition, which helped me develop my skills and better understand the practical aspects of internal auditing," said Joshua Kamara, a management major with a concentration in international management and a minor in internal audit.

Students attended the conference thanks to generous support from LSUCIA&CRM sponsors. Lydia Lafleur, distinguished instructor and assistant director for LSUCIA&CRM, accompanied the group.


Institutional Investor Roundtables 

Rip Reeves and Winston Smith at 2023 professional conference

Rip Reeves and Winston Smith at the 2023 Endowments & Foundations Roundtable

Senior finance majors Jack Urbanek and Winston Smith attend roundtables presented by Institutional Investor. The organization uses publications, forums, membership groups, and other outlets to deliver premium financial, markets, and investments intelligence.

Urbanek attended the Institutional Investor Winter Investment Roundtable in Orlando on March 14-15. Participants focused on the question, "How does the current macro environment impact an allocator's investment decisions around their portfolio?" 

"It was immensely valuable as an undergraduate student to participate in conversations between asset allocators and asset managers," said Urbanek. "The two-day event was packed with panels, interviews, debates, and small group sessions. These discussions centered around the current economic environment with emerging opportunities and challenges to industry participants. I had the pleasure of meeting and learning from brilliant people."

Smith traveled to Boston for the 2023 Endowments & Foundations Roundtable. Attendees explored macroeconomics and portfolio considerations as the economic recovery continues. The event attracted CIOs, asset managers, and investment consultants. 

LSU Department of Finance adjunct faculty member and Institutional Investor CEO Rip Reeves (BS Finance '83 and MBA '85) facilitated the students' participation. He reports that Urbanek and Smith's attendance was well received and could lead to student panels at future roundtables. 


ICSC Las Vegas

LSU business students at a real-estate reception

Photo (left to right): Kara-Lynn Dillon (BS Finance), Adam Mosher (BS Economics), Matthew Randall (BS General Business), Charlotte, Chehardy (BS Finance), Kylie O'Brien (BS Finance), Simon Shuler (BS Finance)

Six LSU business students with an interest in commercial real estate hit the networking jackpot in May when they traveled to the 2023 International Council of Shopping Centers conference. ICSC Las Vegas is a gathering for innovators and dealmakers who drive the retail real estate industry. This year's event attracted more than 24,000 attendees. The three-day agenda included networking events and an array of professional development workshops.

"It was an amazing experience," said senior finance major Kylie O'Brien. "I learned more about the commercial real estate industry while networking with many experienced professionals and even fellow students. I gained career clarity and connected with individuals who can help me achieve my goals."

Stirling founders and LSU alumni Jimmy Maurin and Roger Ogden generously funded the students' participation. The group was accompanied by Brian Andrews, senior instructor in the Department of Finance.