Recap of the FIMS Career Conference: Fast Pass to Your Future

By Molly McCracken, FIMS Career Services Officer

Life is like a... theme park?

Okay. Perhaps that’s not the typical cliché you’ve heard, but it certainly applied to this year’s FIMS Career Conference.

The next graduating class of FIMS students is coming up to a pivotal transition point in their lives: Deciding what they will do beyond their time here in FIMS. As some students contemplate where to apply for their first job, and others work away on graduate school applications, most students can bond over a shared mix of anticipation and uncertainty.

That’s why FIMS hosted its annual FIMS Career Conference 2022: Fast Pass to Your Future on October 21. Now entering its 6th year running, this capstone event is designed to bring graduating students into contact with exceptional alumni who have career experience and stories to share.

Seventeen FIMS alumni from industries like marketing, media, non-profits, PR and tech (and more!) became guides for the day as they shared their adventures, their top thrills, and their biggest spills through organized sessions and informal networking conversations. We also celebrated the much-anticipated return to an in-person conference for the first time since 2020.

Television producer, director, and proud FIMS alumnus Mike Bickerton, BA’01, opened the day with a keynote address. Having been involved in producing reality shows like The Amazing Race Canada, Blown Away, and most recently, Canada’s Drag Race, Mike gave a presentation that oozed with recollections and references to his award-winning career in unscripted television.

He did leave students with one big ‘spoiler alert’ for the day, to help students make realistic plans:

There is no “fast pass,” you have to put in the work to get where you want to go.

The afternoon featured career tell-all breakout sessions from alumni working across media industries, a new graduate panel with recent alumni who can talk about that overwhelming “first year out,” and a festive networking session.

This year's selection of alumni ranged from those in their early careers to experienced leaders working in a wide array of professional roles. Nominated to participate by the FIMS Career Conference Committee, this year’s speakers may have all studied at FIMS, but each reflected different decisions, priorities, and skills that have led to remarkably different pathways.

As Associate Dean Susan Knabe so eloquently put it, “Even though we all walk through the same front gates, no one’s journey is quite the same.”

Like a theme park, this life can be exciting, scary, and full of surprises. There is no one right way to navigate it, but this year’s alumni guests gave our students a leg up with some great information on how to make the most of their next adventure.

Thank you to our alumni speakers and networking guests, student volunteers, staff, and faculty who supported this event. This event is created and funded BY students FOR students, through the generous support of the FIMS Undergraduate Student Fund (USF).