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Guest Speaker Series: Ivan Wanis-Ruiz on Networking & Pitching

June 1, 2020
UBC MEL MHLP Guest Speaker Ivan Wanis Ruiz

On May 20, UBC Master of Engineering Leadership and Master of Health Leadership & Policy students took part in a Networking & Pitching online seminar conducted by Ivan Wanis-Ruiz. Wanis-Ruiz is an Advanced Toastmaster Gold, certified trainer for the Dale Carnegie Business group, and trained actor with roles in numerous feature films. He shared his skill and experience with MEL & MHLP students so they might make the best of networking situations. The online seminar was designed to enable MEL & MHLP students to best pitch themselves to potential colleagues, hiring managers, and other professional connections. 

Wanis-Ruiz shared a dynamic approach to pitching oneself that focused on the key strategies to employ when introducing oneself. He coached students on how to create conversation, emphasize their value proposition, and develop strategic questions to spark curiosity. 

These strategies are a sure way to ensure that connections made at networking events will remember you. Further, when you pitch yourself well, the connections you make are more likely to recommend you to professional contacts. 

One of the strategies included how to effectively introduce oneself. Wanis-Ruiz recommended that students associate their name with a rhyming word, famous individual, or something easily identifiable. This approach engages others in the conversation in a catchy manner that encourages interesting conversation beyond small talk. 

Wanis-Ruiz encouraged students to develop a unique value statement to utilize in their pitch. By understanding your key strengths, or “superpower,” you are better able to present yourself confidently and memorably. Beyond this, Wanis-Ruiz taught students how to generate strategic questions that identify the values they bring to the workplace. 

These strategic questions highlight for interviewers or hiring managers why the student would be beneficial to the team. 

To conclude his presentation, Wanis-Ruiz emphasized story-telling as the best manner to effectively answer questions. He demonstrated how when individuals use certain sentence structures, they can better communicate powerful ideas. 

Within the Master of Engineering Leadership and Master of Health Leadership & Policy programs, students are trained in best practices for creating meaningful professional relationships that serve as a stepping stone to their career goals. 

Explore how the Master of Engineering Leadership and Master of Health Leadership & Policy professional graduate degree programs can help accelerate your career.