Shaping Future Leaders: The Power of Professionally Polished By Aila Berrigan, Adeline Berry & Pearson Clark

Above: The Students and Professionals posing for a group photo at the KPMG Etiquette Seminar and Dinner on September 21, 2023. All photos are credited to Sarah Lewis Photography.

The Professional Polished Program is a collection of opportunities to help prepare students for life beyond college. They gain valuable guidance in this transition from business professionals and from each other. These experiences were made available thanks to the generous support from KPMG, Lavelle’s Bistro, UAF Alumni Association, In My Element, Spirit of Alaska FCU, and Frank’s Menswear. Students shared that this program left them with confidence and experience that they can’t gain in the classroom.

KPMG Etiquette Seminar & Dinner

Sponsored by KPMG LLC

Above: Tom and Janet Bartels chatting with UAF students Aila Berrigan, left, and Adeline Berry.

The 2023 KPMG Etiquette Seminar and Dinner was an overall success, with 13 professionals from various backgrounds and 16 CBSM students in attendance. Students were able to gain extensive advice about professional etiquette and were talked through the do’s and don’ts by KPMG's very own Mellisa Jay, Audit Senior Manager.

Students were also given advice on the most burning questions around the topic from the experts in attendance. The students were then put into a rapid round of questions with the professionals, allowing exclusive one-on-one opportunities to converse with the experts.

Right: KPMG's Melissa Jay, left, chatting with UAF Students Aiyana Fragoso, center, and Ashley Plys during the lightning round.

Following the seminar, students put their newfound skills to the test at a private dinner. The dinner allowed for further conversation between professionals and students, crafting the entire night into a learning experience. The students walked away with valuable experiences and connections to help aid in a seamless transition from students to professionals.

Right: CBSM Alumna, Kelly Ward, left, and student Aila Berrigan conversing during the lightning round.

Frank's Menswear

Sponsored by Spirit of Alaska FCU

A sidewalk view of Frank's Menswear during the winter months.

Above: Photo courtesy of Frank's Menswear.

Stepping into the business world can be a little daunting at times, from learning how to network to presenting yourself to potential clients. However, no university looks out for its students the way UAF does. After several successful years, the UAF College of Business and Security Management has once again teamed up with Frank’s Menswear and Spirit of Alaska Federal Credit Union to allow business students to better prepare themselves for the business world.

Frank’s Menswear is a specialty clothing store offering business, formal and casual attire and is locally owned by none other than a UAF alumnus, Jeremiah Smith ‘05. With a gift from Spirit of Alaska, eligible students receive a shopping stipend at Frank’s Menswear, as well as styling tips along the way.

Left: MBA Student, Jason Chausse, posing with his new suit in front of the tie wall inside Frank's Menswear.

This is a great way to give students more confidence in the business world and better prepare them for interviews or business-related events. Having this chance is incredible and along with the other Professionally Polished events, is an overall experience that no student should miss.

Top: Keldrick Kearse posing wearing his new shirt and jacket in front of the tie wall inside Frank's Menswear. Bottom left: Jesse Pfeffer showing off a new dress shirt after trying a few on. Bottom right: Theo Melitas showing off the new suit that he received on behalf of the Professionally Polished Program.

In My Element

Possible thanks to In My Element Boutique and private donations

In My Element is a local women’s boutique guided by the vision of UAF alumni Sheryl DeBoard '78, and has been an unwavering beacon of support for the College of Business and Security Management since their first donation in 2014. This boutique has provided countless transformative moments for our students and this year's event was yet another chapter in the heartwarming collaboration.

Left: UAF pop-up shop for students. Shoes donated by In My Element. Photo courtesy of Tammy Tragis-McCook.

Through this partnership our students are given more than just clothing; they're introduced to the nuanced world of professional dressing and understanding the significance of a professional wardrobe. Moreover, it provides a tangible boost in their confidence, a necessary attribute as they navigate their upcoming professional journeys and attend community events. This amazing event, championed by both In My Element and CBSM, highlights the profound impact that community collaboration can have in shaping the future leaders of tomorrow.

Right: UAF student showing off her top picks featuring multiple In My Element clothing items.