This past June, I was fortunate enough to spend a weekend in San Antonio, TX attending the Boulé Scholars Network Conference. At the conference, I, along with six other young men from across the country, participated in various workshops focused on teaching professional and leadership skills. For example, we participated in a business etiquette workshop and were surprised with an on the spot public speaking session where we had to quickly craft and deliver an elevator pitch about ourselves to the entire conference.

While I found the aforementioned activities rewarding, the most valuable sessions were the informal “fireside chats” that us students had with the members of the Boulé. In these chats, no question was off limits, so we could ask about school, potential careers, or even life in general. These chats were an invaluable opportunity to pick the minds of some of the most accomplished individuals in their respective fields and receive advice based on the lessons they have learned over the years.

As a whole, the conference served as an excellent opportunity for me to extend my network by establishing relationships with highly accomplished surgeons, professors, businessmen, and more. Just as important as connecting with individuals already at the top of their fields, I was also able to meet the six other highly accomplished and motivated young men attending the conference. As one of those young men told me, we are going to do great things because we now have a common bond as attendees of this conference and will hold each other accountable to do so.

I am grateful to the GZBF for their continued support through scholarships and for sponsoring me to attend the Boulé Scholars Network Conference. As I enter my senior year at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and look to start a technology business after graduation, the lessons I have learned and the relationships I have built by attending the Boulé Scholars Network Conference will prove to be invaluable.