University News

NMGZ Community Members Truly Make A Difference

January 18, 2024

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MACOMB, IL - - Western Illinois University faculty and National Millennial and Gen Z Community (NMGZ) members attended an Emerging Leaders Summit and met with top executives in their respective fields.

NMGZ Community members, including Camron Anderson, a Business Marketing major; Mia Grimaldi, a Business Management major; and WIU Assistant Professor of Marketing and NMGZ Community Advisor Donna Wiencek, attended the event. They met with multiple organizations, including Northwestern Mutual, BVK, HUB International, BMO Harris Bank, NBC Universal/NBC Chicago and Echo Global Logistics in Milwaukee and Chicago.

The Emerging Leaders Summit brought together emerging leaders from diverse backgrounds who discussed establishing climates of inclusion, belonging and community in their work lives. Challenges and success stories were shared, and breakout sessions provided opportunities for in-depth discussion. Empowerment of emerging leaders was the central focus of the Summit. The event began with a tour of PCI, Inc., an award winning public relations firm. Members met with the president and top executives. During the afternoon, members met with Plank Center board members, business owners, executives and NMGZ advisors who had worked on a DEI project.

Members also traveled to Milwaukee and Chicago and met with top executives from Northwestern Mutual, BVK, HUB International, BMO Harris Bank, NBC Universal/NBC Chicago and Echo Global Logistics to discuss a variety of topics that impact commerce, public policy, governance, communications, product and service development, marketing, human resources, diversity and corporate social responsibility.

"Not only did I get the chance to further my understanding of what companies search for when they hire young business professionals, but I was also able to connect with other passionate students who share the same leadership goals as myself." Grimaldi said.

"The trip was a life changing experience for our students and the other NMGZ Community members. It was rewarding to see Camron and Mia showcase their knowledge and skills with the executives and NMGZ Community members. They represented WIU very well." Wiencek said.

NMGZ was founded to bring together a community of millennial thinkers who strive to change the conversation about the millennial generation. In an effort to change the conversation, the NMGZ Community has executed multiple think tank conversations with key influencers in media and business. The NMGZ Community represents more than 44 colleges and universities in over 40 states and nearly 1,000 alumni. There are no membership dues.

"Through my experiences as part of NMGZ, I feel that I have grown both personally and professionally. I've learned to not only better market myself and take chances with networking opportunities to engage with others within my field and expand my own insight, but also to add my own input into the conversation." Anderson said.

Students interested in joining the NMGZ Community can contact Wiencek at An NMGZ Community interest meeting will be held from noon-1 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 31 in Stipes Hall 121 and virtually on Zoom.

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Office of University Communications & Marketing