Monday, July 30, 2007


Goethe-Institut is "the cultural institute of the Federal Republic of Germany with a global reach". Their mission is to "promote knowledge of the German language abroad and foster international cultural cooperation."

This is a great place to learn more about Germany from all angles: cultural, political, etc. They have a lot of informational resources including the library if you are interested in German literature. The Institute provides great German classes if you want to learn the language and it also constantly hires German teachers if you are interested in this kind of job.

They also organize a lot of cultural events: music events, films, art events, etc.

So based on the types of activities and events organized, Goethe-Institute can be a great place to go to for social networking for both Germans and non-Germans. I friend of mine who is not German but speaks German as a 2nd language and visits the Institute often says it's the best place for anyone interested in anything "German".

The website of the Institute in Chicago is but the good news is that it operates in other major US cities as well. To find the website of the Institute in your city, please, go to

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Wednesday, July 25, 2007

International Trade Association of Greater Chicago

ITA/GC is a big organization that can offer a lot to those who are interested in growing business internationally, international cooperation and international interaction. As it mentioned on their website their "focus is on practicality: on building knowledge and enabling relationships that help people do international business. While our scope of interest is complex—all aspects of trading across all geographies and all industries—our work is simple: to help others gain understanding that is personal, current, and useful."

ITA/GC organizes several events per month: some of them are more education-oriented, others are more networking-oriented. But even those that are more educational give you chance for networking during the registration as well as after the event.

You can benefit from what ITA/GC if you are an entrepreneur or business professional interested in gaining international contacts or if you are an international yourself and want to meet your countryman or your American counterparts.

Membership in this organization is for a fee as well as all events. However, you don't need to be a member to attend events, you just pay a little bit more to attend an event and the fees are very reasonable.

ITA/GC also offers a lot of useful resources: newsletter, white papers, trade literature, etc.

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Sunday, July 22, 2007

"Championing Hispanic Higher Education Success"

Under this name an anual national conference will take place in Chicago, IL on October 20-22, 2007 organized by Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU). It is organized as a forum for both students and professionals to discuss issues of higher education.

Undergraduate, graduate and professional school students from colleges and universities throughout the Americas are invited from all academic disciplines. Arrive with resumes to discuss career, internship, research and advanced education opportunities. Special Student Track Workshops, Leadership Forums, Student Mixers and a Career Fair will be part of HACU’s 21st Annual Conference.

Students conference rate is 299 USD but before August 10, 2007 you can apply for a Conference Scholarship that will cover the cost of:
(1) conference registration;
(2) travel and lodging for out-of-state students;
(3) conference-related meals; and
(4) conference-sponsored entertainment events.

However the admission to Career Fair only is always FREE and open to all students.

For more information contact Student Track Coordinator: (207) 692-3805,

The detailed information aboiut the event and how to apply for scholarships is available at

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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Chicago Sister Cities

As stated on its website: "The Chicago Sister Cities International Program, under the auspices of the Department of Cultural Affairs, provides leadership to develop, manage and coordinate comprehensive exchanges with Chicago’s 27 international Sister Cities [worldwide]. It aims to increase international trade, economic development, promote exchanges of culture, education, medicine, environment, technology & social service opportunities with its sister cities for the benefit of the City of Chicago, its residents and businesses."

Various events are organized under the umbrella of this this program (lectures, art exhibitions, community events (with ethnic food, music and dances), etc., usually several events per month. These events can serve several networking purposes:

1. social interaction for those who want to learn more about OTHER countries and cultures and for those who want to meet their fellow countryman (ex. a lot of Indians will be expected at a Delhi-related gathering)

2. business development if your business is related to international trade (since the mission of the program is "to increase international trade .... and service opportunities that benefit Chicago businesses" - see above) - you will be able to meet people from a whole range of business that you can network with.

The Web site of this program is It not only lists the scheduled events but provides a lot of useful resources on various global topics from language to travel to business.

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Friday, July 13, 2007

Ask Liz Ryan

Ask Liz Ryan is a virtual networking community that is great for everything: social networking, job advice, business development, etc.

Ask Liz Ryan has 2 types of forums which everyone can join for FREE:
1. Worldwide forum (anyone anywhere in the world can join)
2. local forums across United States (active in 42 major cities which pretty much cover most of the states).

People communicate via (a) daily e-mail digest(s) to which anyone can submit a questions or request: anything from career advice to recommendations of a good plumber, hair dresser, nurse, etc. in your vicinity; from information on household items you want to sell to advice on wedding planning.

Members read digests and if they know someone they can recommend or can give advice they post the answer for you. Generally this community is very helpful and very big (hundreds of participants in local communities and more that 20,000 in a global one) and your question will never be unanswered.

General site:
Global Community:
Local US communities per city:

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Tuesday, July 10, 2007

College Recruiter

It is difficult to be an alien not knowing what to do and where to turn to especially if you are at a turning point in your life: graduating from high school or college. College Recruiter is the best website I saw so far for young people, fresh graduates looking for that important first position as well as high school graduates looking for information about higher education.

Information the site offers for high school seniors:
1. Colleges and universities
2. Student loans
3. Advice on exciting new majors that a student can choose, such as biomedical photography or biomedical engineering

Information for college graduates:
1. Lists of available jobs on the site
2. Information on employers and from employers as well as information on recruiters and from recruiters
3. Useful links on such topics as: salary reports, resume writing and distribution, personality assessment, industry magazines and many others

And these are just the examples of numerous other useful resources that are on this site.

Finally, there is a section of the site that will be useful for everyone: the site supports various blogs. The authors of the blogs are various experts: admission counselors, career counselors, resume experts, internship experts, networking experts (yours truly was honored to be included as an author of the career-related blog).

The site is also very user-friendly and it is constantly up-dated with new information.

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Thursday, July 5, 2007

Networking group for women in Chicago western suburbs

West Suburban Women Entrepreneurs (WSWE) is an organization that provides a forum for women business owners in Chicago's western suburbs.

WSWE organizes monthly meetings and special programs which are good networking opportunities for members and which have some educational content as well. The purpose of this organization is also to provide support and referrals for women entrepreneurs. Another advantage for business owners is that WSWE publishes information about all its members on its site which is good advertising.

Membership is for a fee which is a little bit higher than an average fee in a women network in Chicagoland but if you are based in Western Suburbs and are looking for a support group this is the one for you.

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