Representing the University of Minnesota at the 2011 National Grocers Association Convention was a rewarding and valuable experience to my education and career path.
Competing in the case study competition in Las Vegas was a proud experience for my fellow classmates and me since we spent a great deal of time preparing. I personally found it intriguing to study how various food industries and grocers use social media effectively depending on their company's size, goals, and brand values. It was a rewarding experience to be able to share our ideas and research to professionals in the industry while also observing other universities' perspectives on the topic.
I personally found the mentor program the most enlightening aspect of the internship because it was a great opportunity to mingle with professionals in the industry and partake in meetings. Since my mentor was head of sales at Coborn's, it was very beneficial to my food industries marketing major to be able to sit in on meetings concerning marketing and sales strategy between grocer and vendor.
In regards to the array of workshops topics, speakers, and number of vendors, the NGA convention was very impressive. Though, a significant aspect of the convention that I recognized was the unique relationship between independent grocers and other grocers or between grocer and vendor. It was obvious to notice throughout the convention that the independent grocers were willing to share their story and lend advice to others, especially during a time of economic recovery. Independent grocers are a special part of the industry because they implement a business culture that's unique from the rest. In that, meeting people that share a similar vision was interesting and insightful in understanding the industry in its entirety. I greatly appreciate and value the privilege of representing the University of Minnesota at the 2011 National Grocers Association Convention.
- Annette Gooch