Application for GHC 2024 Scholarship is now OPEN!

You can apply at this link (Deadline is Friday, May 24th at 11:59 pm PT).


Previous GHC Attendees FAQ

Ashley Yung – 4th year Data Science major
Kristin Leung – 4th year CS major
Nitish Nagesh – Ph.D. student at the Institute for Future Health
Maya Lee – 4th year CS major and Informatics minor

Biggest takeaway from GHC experience?

Ashley: Plan really well, be aware of the time and energy you have to give to it.

Kristin: Do research in advance.

Nitish: Very interesting experience as his first time in Orlando and first time attending a conference in-person with more than 10,000 people: Listening to people’s experiences from UCI and their journey preparing them for the next steps for their career.

Maya: Regarding preparation, you need to know what you want before you go to the conference: for example, if looking for an internship, match your skills to the skills of the internship. Know what distinguishes you.

What was your goal when attending GHC?

Ashley: Looking for full time roles and other opportunities for internships throughout the school year or summer. Although everyone is open to talking. If going in with the mindset to network, consider the types of people you want to meet and network with. Need to know who you want to talk to about the topic and where to find those people. Examples include how to sell yourself, looking for a specific position.

Kristin: Went mostly with an exploratory goal. Going into senior year and looking for full time roles. Went to meet new people and look for sponsorships for WICS as the incoming corporate lead. Everyone is open to talk to you as long as you put yourself out there.

Nitish: Be very intentional. There is a lot that GHC has to offer. Remember to have strategic breaks. I was interested in how people are spearheading accessibility in tech. Wants to be an ally to all women in tech. Appreciated the camaraderie among all attendees.

Maya: Has always been interested in reading about trailblazers in technology. Got a lot out of the keynote speakers and talks.

Tips for Planning in Advance / What you wish you did to prepare?

Ashley: For the companies you want to specifically talk to, review their company website, about pages, mottos, and use that same language with the company recruiters. Be as tailored as possible for the companies you are most interested in. AnitaB has a database with all jobs presented by attending companies. Clean up your resume and upload it to the DB. Companies tend to reach out to you ~2 weeks before the conference. Prepare for interviews (technical and behavioral).

Kristin: There’s a lot of resources. Look up stuff online. The app was very helpful with all information consolidated in one place. Do a little bit of research on who is going to be there. If there is a company you are interested in, keep an eye out for them. Make your plan according to what you want out of the conference.

Nitish: Pre-preparation: weather, packing, traveling WICS will help you and with other logistics. Companies have networking sessions at the end of every day and registration opens well before the conference. During the conference: try to attend 1:1 sessions with companies. Meeting people and learning about their stories and sharing yours. Post conference: Follow up with people after the conference.

Maya: Could’ve looked at the schedule more in advance because when you’re at the conference time moves at a different speed. Definitely put things on your calendar. Download the app. Really know which activities you want to go to and are popular. Make sure to go to talks in advance if you really want to. Figure out what your priorities are in case a conversation takes too long and impacts your schedule for the rest of the day. Regarding resumes, it is very helpful to have your resume downloaded on your phone.

What did each day consist of and about many hours each day were dedicated to GHC events/activities?

Ashley: The weather was terrible. Be careful of your health. Sleep enough. Eat enough. Networking after hours is important but if you see recruiters in an elevator, leave them alone.

Kristin: There is an expo hall with all the companies. That’s where you do the main thing – like talking to companies. It is open all day from 9-5pm. There are pre expo hall events like breakfasts, dinners. Recruiters will invite you sometimes. There are a lot of fun activities post expo hall.

Nitish: Prioritize your well-being, prioritize hydration, it’s very important to take care of yourself. Make friends with other scholars. Make time to take breaks. The real networking happens outside the conference. Everyone’s journey is very different. Look inwards and think about what your values are, your capabilities, your goals. You are enough and you need to take care of your own well-being. Companies will come and go, conferences will come and go, but relationships will always remain.

Maya: Wake up when you want to. There was a really long line to get into the expo hall. That might change this year. There’s smaller networking events outside of the expo hall. Make sure you’re on the registration list for more private events.

How did you make a lasting impression on recruiters/people you talked to? Did you receive any offers or opportunities after attending because of GHC?

Ashley: In regard to not being robotic, and selling yourself, don’t read everything off your resume. Be curious, ask questions, be personable. Be courteous to others behind you waiting to talk to the recruiter. There are also smaller companies who have eager recruiters that are great to talk to. Find niche opportunities that are more personal to you than to other applicants/attendees. Be strategic.

Kristin: It’s very easy for the expo hall booths to become formulaic and attendees say the same thing to recruiters. It’s easy to get lost in the crowd as well. If you want to stand out in these situations, be genuine and talk to them more as a person and highlight your own strengths, that will help you. If you talk to them with the intention of getting a job rather than getting to know them as a person, it will benefit you more in the long run. Networking with other students is easier because you’re all in the same boat and can understand each other. Make sure you’re genuine and don’t go with the specific intent to land a job with your conversation. It is good to have questions prepared.

Maya: One thing that I did at GHC… Went to the LGBTQ networking session. It was much smaller than the expo hall. It’s an open hour for networking. Was able to talk to individuals who were there as recruiters but were at the event as networkers. It was a nice experience to talk to them when they’re not in their “on” mode. They’re more as their own person. Lot of companies have different types of people at their booths. Know your audience. If you’re talking to a recruiter, talk about the job prospects but if talking to the software engineer, ask about specifics.

Best swag you got?

Every booth gives out swag. Some give new swag every day during the conference. You should bring a separate suitcase for the swag. You will get many tote bags. There are some nice tote bags like the Intuit tote bag with a big zipper and high quality. Rivian had high-quality t-shirts. John Deer gave really nice hats (pink ones!).