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UCF’s College of Business Administration held its Welcome to the Majors event Friday morning in the CFE Arena for 2,500 students, mandatory for the school’s Career Research and Planning class.

Students enrolled in the class were required to attend the class' first meeting, which took place from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Welcome to the Majors aimed to immediately set students on the path to successful networking.

“Networking is about identifying the needs of others and helping them meet those needs,” said Lonny Butcher, director of professional development for the college.

The event gave students new to the business program the opportunity to begin networking immediately with the college’s dean, Paul Jarley, as well as faculty, fellow classmates and attending recruiters, including event sponsor Wells Fargo.

“This is the best event the College of Business puts on for its students,” Butcher said, adding that this particular class was “the largest face-to-face class in the history of UCF.”

Additionally, entrepreneur, best-selling author and “ruckus-maker” Seth Godin made his appearance as the keynote speaker for the event — his first-ever appearance at UCF. Godin, who has published 18 best-selling books and spoken to millions of people at events and companies such as Google and Amazon, spent half an hour speaking to business students on how to stand out in a sea of people trying to fit in.

“Treat people differently,” Godin said. “What they teach you is to make average stuff for average people … [but] you’re in the big leagues now. The reason you’re here is not to fit in with anyone else. Together, we create value.”

Godin’s main point to students was that no one ever created change by trying to fit in with others, but rather by not being afraid to stand out and innovate.

“Your grades do not matter, what matters is that you matter,” he said. “[You have to have] the grit to say, ‘No, I’m not going to fit in.’”

Philliphia Johnston, a junior accounting major enrolled in the class, said it was all about setting up to network and get ready for class and careers.

“It’s like walking into something real,” Johnston said. “This is where it gets serious.”

At the conclusion of his talk, Godin encouraged students to jump in and take chances, telling them if failure wasn’t an option, neither was success.

“The person who invented the ship also invented the shipwreck,” he said. “Don’t wait until it’s time, because it’s never going to be time. Go make a ruckus.”

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Danielle Hendrix is a News Editor for the Central Florida Future. Follow her on Twitter at @dhendrix21 or email her at Danielleh@CentralFloridaFuture.com.

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