University of Chicago Office of Business Diversity Professional Services Symposium 2015

University of Chicago Office of Business Diversity Professional Services Symposium 2015

In 2009, the University of Chicago held the first symposium dedicated to creating opportunities for minority- and women-owned professional service firms. The Professional Services Symposium is a first-of-its-kind program within higher education and is ...

Summary

In 2009, the University of Chicago held the first symposium dedicated to creating opportunities for minority- and women-owned professional service firms. The Professional Services Symposium is a first-of-its-kind program within higher education and is a departure from traditional supplier diversity efforts, which tend to focus primarily on construction and janitorial services. The annual symposium brings prominent minority- and women-owned business leaders from around the country together to network and build sustainable relationships with senior leadership at the University. More than 200 firms have participated in the two-day event, which includes a networking reception and a chance to interact one-on-one with vice presidents and their teams during 45-minute business presentations. Since the symposium’s inception, more than 60 firms have secured business relationships with the University, representing the fields of money management, communications, legal services, human resources, information technology, and architecture. The success of the symposium speaks to the University’s commitment to cultivating the most talented portfolio of business partners and our belief that the best ideas come from having diverse viewpoints at the table.