CONNECT: The Schulich Alumni Forum
CONNECT Toronto ’18 brought together more than 300 Schulich alumni and friends from around the world at the School’s alumni gathering this past weekend. As part of CONNECT Toronto ’18, the School hosted a number of milestone reunion celebrations and gatherings involving the classes of 2013, 2008, 2003, 1998, 1993, 1988, 1983, 1978, 1973, 1968.
The theme of the alumni forum was Next: CONNECT to the Future and focused on some of the emerging challenges and opportunities re-shaping the world of business and society. Alumni attended sessions that ranged from artificial intelligence (AI) and cryptocurrencies to board governance, the future of marketing, and art investing.
For the first time ever, CONNECT took place over two days. The forum kicked off on Friday, April 27 with a Pre-CONNECT Primer called “SEEC-ing the Future” that was hosted by the Schulich Executive Education Centre.
The Forum continued on Saturday, April 28 with opening remarks from Schulich Dean Dezsö J. Horváth, who noted the increased difficulty of managing in an “age of disruption. Janice Fukakusa (MBA ’79, Hon LLD ‘16), Corporate Director, retired CAO & CFO of RBC, and a member of the Dean’s Advisory Council, delivered an engaging opening Fireside Chat. She shared some of the highlights and challenges of her long and successful career. She also offered some hard-earned advice to aspiring leaders and shared her views on the future of the financial services sector, the emergence of new entrants to the traditional banking industry such as Google and Apple, as well as what she thought might be some “infrastructure game-changers” of the future.
Media personality and brand strategist Tony Chapman delivered the keynote closing address titled, Finding Relevancy in the Age of Irrelevancy. The event featured networking hubs; a Coaches Corner, where alumni could book a private 10-minute career coaching session with a number of leading executive coaches; the Schulich Trading Post, where alumni could purchase Schulich memorabilia; and a cocktail reception and prize draw at the conclusion of the event. Schulich alumni Raj Mehta (IMBA ’95), Global Head, Private Capital and Partnerships, Starlight Investments, and Lisa Marie Chen (MBA ’11), Lead Design Strategist, IBM Business Analytics, served as Conference Co-Chairs.
Air Canada was Executive sponsor of the event, TD Insurance was the Networking sponsor, and Johnnie Walker, Moneris, L’Oreal and On the Block Realty were the Affiliate sponsors.