On Wednesday, October 17, 2018, the New York Alumni Chapter held an alumni meetup at the Rubin Museum of Art. Over forty of our fellow alumni, ranging from MBA 1996 to BSc 2018, including the newly appointed Rector, Shahid Hussain and Board Member, Omar Khalid Waheed attended the rousing event.
We are thankful for the alumni who took time out of their busy midweek, some commuting from New Jersey and Connecticut, to attend the event and engage with each other. Everyone had a wonderful time in the beautiful environs of the famed Rubin Museum, that showcases premium art from the Himalayan region. Although many were too busy networking with alumni from diverse industries, including senior partners from investment banking, hedge fund, etc., to avail of the unique opportunity of privately touring the galleries. The alumni also enjoyed a special performance of live acoustic music, featuring percussionists Dan Kurfirst and Leonid Galaganov, and nibbled on Pan-Asian inspired cuisine including delicacies like salmon tikka, potato samosa, and a lot more.
This alumni get together wouldn’t have been possible without the generous support of our New York Alumni Chapter President, Saleem Ahmad, MBA 1996, and the logistical support of our New York Alumni Chapter Secretary, Sadia Zaidy, BSc 2003.
Saleem Ahmad introduced the LUMS Management Committee members to the gathering and shared with the alumni his vision for the Chapter. He highlighted the critical need for, and benefits from such events that allow alumni engagement, especially given the fact that many of our alumni are in diverse and senior roles, and can provide mentorship and support to each other as other Universities do. With an emphasis on the importance of alumni engagement that involves deciding on what the alumni derive most value from and how they would like to take the Chapter forward, Ahmad suggested holding guest speaker sessions and mentorship sessions on topics ranging from resume writing to industry-specific matters for which senior alumni and panelists could be engaged. He stressed that the rejuvenated effort can be taken in one of many directions, and solicited input and help from the broader community. He emphasised giving back to LUMS financially and otherwise by connecting with current students.
Shahid Hussain also urged alumni to attend reunions and network, visit their alma mater, give back by teaching at the institution and staying there when they visit Pakistan, use facilities, exchange ideas, and make an effort to mentor younger alumni and students. He spoke about the up-and-coming developments at LUMS and encouraged the alumni to giveback financially, but not limited to the National Outreach Programme (NOP) as the University is growing and now houses multiple avenues for giveback. He highlighted the many ways available aside from annual giving or a one-time gift, and both thanked the engaged benefactors that already support the University and asked others to share the spirit and send subscriptions and maintain that connection.
While updating the alumni about the latest happenings at LUMS, Osman Waheed highlighted that he was looking after the new School of Education and its various programmes, which has come into being for its aspects of Policy and Governance just as much as teaching. He mentioned that he was delighted to see the diverse group of alumni in Boston where they had just visited. It was a huge matter of pride for them that during their time in Boston they had visited all the top universities there, and everyone not just recognised LUMS but could take at least one to two names of graduates or professionals who had later made a mark at their universities.
Discussions about increasing university ratings also took place, with an emphasis on the rise in exchange students currently at LUMS, who come from places like Germany and Japan, and choose to extend their stay for a host of positive reasons.
One of the most heartening aspects of this get-together was that despite the venue being a unique and fascinating setting with a beautiful ambience, the alumni did not even venture to the galleries as they were too busy networking with their fellow Luminites! This kind of engagement is the most valuable outcome of alumni meet-ups such as this one as it serves as a gateway for the alumni community to come together and connect with each other and their alma mater, and be a source of enduring support.
The alumni had a wonderful time catching up with each other and the esteemed LUMS affiliates, and ended the night on a collective resolve to socialise and network with each other more frequently. Ahmad also solicited feedback and participation from interested alumni to build upon this successful event.