Dinner and Conversation connects students with success

On Tuesday, Feb. 6, Lamar University brought together accomplished alumni and current students for an evening of engaging conversation over dinner. The exclusive event, hosted by the Office of Alumni Affairs, aimed to provide students with valuable insights into the professional landscapes of their chosen fields. Dinner and Conversation

Distinguished alumni, representing a diverse array of professions, took the spotlight as they led discussions at tables corresponding to their respective areas of expertise. The event showcased a lineup spanning fields such as communications, sports medicine, and chemical engineering. 

This year’s Dinner and Conversation featured:  

  • Dr. J. Chad Davis (’90) who serves as Medical Director of Pediatric ICU at the University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston.  
  • Eli Clark (’04) who has held multiple engineering roles at Lyondell Chemical, Equistar Chemicals, Nisseki Chemical, Schlumberger, and LyondellBasell. 
  • Dr. Alex Edgerly (’13) owner of Edgerly Dentistry in Bridge City, Texas. 
  • Dr. Marion Phillips III (’84) who is the Senior Vice President of Community Development & DEI at U.S. News & World Report. 
  • Dr. Richard Bowling (’88) who works as a podiatrist at Beaumont Bone & Joint.  
  • Aleshia Fife (’81) represented careers in business, HR, management, leadership, and computer sciences. Her extensive job history includes roles at Lockheed Martin, IBM, and Cardinal Technologies.  
  • Elohor (Okene) Jackson (‘20), who serves as the High Pressure Copolymer Improvement Engineer at Dow Chemical.  
  • Dr. Bethany Aiena ('11) who currently serves as the Associate Director of the Behavioral Health Program at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Houston. 

Students used this opportunity to gain personal insights into their prospective careers and to ask in-depth questions about their future careers.  

“The alumna at our table was actually from Dow Chemical, and I'll be co-oping there this summer, so it's a great opportunity to get a preview of what I'm getting into,” chemical engineering student Dennis Tran said. 

Dinner and Conversation StudentsOther students got insight into what potential academic endeavors they might make in the future.  

“I just want to pick her [Fife] brain about HR, and then I really want to discuss business law because my minor is business law and I'm considering law school,” Amarie Guillory said.  

The event continues to showcase Lamar University's commitment to practical networking and industry exposure for its students. 

“It’s always exciting to talk to people who have been in the industry because I feel like there's a really big difference between theory and what we actually do,” Reaud Honors Institute Scholar Peyton Lee said. “It's really exciting to have these conversations to gain a deeper understanding of what happens in the field.” 

For more information about Dinner and Conversation, interested individuals can contact the Office of Alumni Affairs at (409) 880-8921.