By Rose Oswald Poels
For many of us, the beginning of autumn marks back to school. While hundreds of bankers across the state prepare for new professional development opportunities, many of our future colleagues and leaders are as well.
As bankers are well aware, a shrinking talent pool threatens the long-term viability and competitiveness of our industry. Led by Chair Donna Hoppenjan, the Wisconsin Bankers Association (WBA) is encouraging the membership to consider the ways in which we each can engage — or “inspire” — the next generation to consider a career in banking. It is vital that bankers today are proactive in ensuring our industry’s future success by connecting with students and demonstrating the opportunities available to them.
With talent recruitment at the top of mind for many banks, the Association will once again be hosting several “career night” presentations in the coming months. With the goal of closing the gap between students and banking professionals, these upcoming events are open to students interested in learning more about the industry, what careers are available to them, and why the banking industry might be a good fit for them. Starting this fall, and throughout the academic school year, career nights will take place at Marquette University, UW–Eau Claire, UW–Green Bay, UW–La Crosse, UW–Madison, and UW–Whitewater, with the possibility of more locations being added.
If you, or someone from your bank, are interested in partnering with the Association to serve as a panelist at one of these upcoming events, please contact our team.
In addition to directly connecting with students during a career fair or panel presentation, bankers are also encouraged to share opportunities to further students’ experiences and engagement with the banking industry. Internships are a great example of this, and WBA members may post internship job ads at no cost in our Banker’s Marketplace.
Additionally, sharing the Wisconsin Bankers Foundation’s (WBF) fourth annual Agricultural Banking Scholarship opportunity widely among your networks is an easy way to invest in the students who are interested in a banking career and driving our agricultural sector. The application period is open through November 15, 2023, for students currently enrolled at an accredited Wisconsin college, university, or technical college who are pursuing a career related to agribusiness. Two scholarships of $1,500 each are available.
Like our members, WBA is dedicated to ensuring a bright future for the industry. With your help, we can demonstrate the diverse and rewarding career paths available within the banking sector, foster relationships with students eager to explore these opportunities, and provide the necessary support for them to thrive in our industry.