Alumni Council Meeting – U of A’s Economic Impact, Alumni Weekend, Venture Mentoring Service

ualberta-wallpaper05-fall-campus-640Attended my first Alumni Council meeting this morning. Thought I’d share some of the highlights here.

Alumni Weekend was a huge draw this past week with numerous events being held to celebrate past graduates. For a recap of the events, check out the Alumni Association’s Storify feed.

The study that examined the impact that University of Alberta alumni have had on the economy is well worth a read. Lots of numbers got published in the past few weeks in the papers, but there’s more to the research worth looking at. Dr. Anthony Briggs, one of the authors of the article, gave the group some additional insight into the alumni’s innovation and entrepreneurship, including what factors played a role during their time on campus. The full article is available via New Trail.

I also liked Dr. Briggs’ assertion that the U of A can’t be viewed as a “vessel” for research and innovation, but rather, more as a catalyst. For example, students may not start up new companies while on campus, but down the road, they may put together their ideas for launch.

The U of A is also embarking on a new program that will connect experienced entrepreneurs with fellow U of A alumni looking for guidance. The Venture Mentoring Service is set to launch later this year and aims to replicate a successful program offered by MIT.

Update (2013, November 20th): U of A alumni start up service to mentor young entrepreneurs – The Gateway

I also want to point out the fantastic work being done by the University Wellness Services. The group promotes healthy living and offers support to students and does a great job reaching out to students. To learn more about the great initiatives they have going on, including the Heroes for Health project, visit their website.

2 thoughts on “Alumni Council Meeting – U of A’s Economic Impact, Alumni Weekend, Venture Mentoring Service

  1. I can see you’re going to really bring some great ideas to the table Sunil. Thanks for recapping what you learned from the meeting. It’s interesting times to be an alumni with input on campus.

  2. Appreciate the comment Andrea!

    I’m hoping to make this a regular thing and get some of the other members of the committee to provide comments as well.

    One thing I’ve learned already is that as alumni, the best thing we can do is to keep creating connections between the campus and the larger community. This is for any alumni, regardless of commitee membership, faculty, etc. There’s a lot happening on campus, including programs and services, that can linked to similar groups, and benefit a larger population.

    If you have any ideas, you can always leave a comment here or contact me directly. 🙂

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