Two years ago I did my first keg stand at a Darden tailgate. Professor Elliott Weiss was holding my legs up. Things got wild after that.
Now before you believe everything you read: it wasn’t a real keg stand. It was a spoof, filmed for the Darden Follies. But if I were ever to do a first keg stand, it wouldn’t be at a Darden tailgate. Yours shouldn’t be either.
This Saturday the Darden tailgate is sponsored by Deloitte. Virginia versus Maryland. It promises to be a game that you may want to come late to, so you can spend that extra time networking with the professionals from Deloitte. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about this, and have come up with my top 10 list of things to do, and not to do, at a sponsored tailgate.
10. Your first keg stand, or any keg stand, or drink excessively. Tailgate don’t get you an offer, but they sure can keep you from getting one.
Enjoy yourself, unwind from a Saturday of case prep.
9. Root for Maryland, or wear red. (Okay, that’s just a personal one, and not mandatory. You actually may find a Deloitte person who went to Maryland.)
Wear orange! Pretend to be a UVA football fan. School spirit is a positive quality.
8. Monopolize recruiter time (over the course of a two-hour tailgate, you’ll have time to spend 5-10 minutes with several different Deloitte employees).
Meet every (or nearly) recruiter at the event.
7. Complain about the food, or the temperature of the beer.
Thank the company for sponsoring, and thank the SY team for making it happen.
6. Ask the company: “What do you guys do — I’ve never heard of _____.”
Research on the company and the alumni attending so that you can ask intelligent questions and carry on a decent conversation.
5. Show up at game time and then expect the recruiter to miss the opening kick-off.
Come early when the crowds are low.
4. Skip the tailgate because you are not interested in the function or the firm.
Come anyway, and enjoy your friends. The tailgate is not just a networking event for companies but for you to get to know some Second Years.
3. Feign interest in the company just because you want a free beer.
See 4. Come anyway. Thank them, and have a great time.
2. Wear those preppy orange pants with blue “v” all over them.
Okay, just another personal pet peeve. I’m growing accustomed to seeing those on double Hoos.
1. Stay at home and do cases.
At least come to the tailgate. You can skip the game.
Darden is extremely fortunate to have companies sponsor our tailgates, so that we can get together and enjoy each other’s company. Use this as an opportunity to build your brand, and to build the Darden brand. I’ll see you there (I’ll be the one wearing orange, but not the orange pants with the blue “V” all over them…at least not yet.)