Stripes Social founders (from left) Sarah Edwards, Amanda Ledet and Shannon Coulon are working to connect businesses and people within the Greater Baton Rouge community through engaging events. Photo by Caitlin B Photography

Networking group Stripes Social is working to connect LSU grads

Nowadays, networking is everything. In college, there are so many opportunities to do just that through clubs, sports, Greek life and more. But what happens once you toss your cap at graduation?

After Sarah Edwards, a former LSU gymnast, and Shannon Coulon, a former LSU cheerleader, graduated and lost the sense of community that they felt while in college, they connected with LSU E.J. Ourso College of Business marketing instructor and internship coordinator Amanda Ledet who was struggling to help businesses find new hires. The three came together to form social networking group Stripes Social. But this new organization isn’t strictly business.

“We don’t want to come across as your typical networking group,” says Edwards. “We want members to make genuine connections and lasting friendships through meeting at our events.”

The group is open to anyone who has “earned their stripes” by graduating from LSU, and new members can expect a welcoming environment with an emphasis on uplifting others. After just two events, the founders of Stripes have noticed the positive impact that comes from the mixing of different social circles and individuals throughout the community.

“No matter what age you are–whether you own a business or you’re an intern–it can only help you to make those crucial connections,” says Coulon. “The most successful people are always great at fostering and nurturing relationships.”

In the future, the trio plans to have smaller groups for lunch and learn events, seminars relating to business, and even workout classes and wine tastings. “We just want to bring the community together in an engaging way,” Ledet explains.

A safe space like the one they’re working to create is something that Ledet says has long been missing in Baton Rouge. “I meet many businesses looking to hire students or recent graduates, and it can be very hard to find a good fit,” she explains. “I’ve also seen the value of networking in my life, and I know Shannon and Sarah can say the same.” @stripessocial