Bringing Alums and MBA Students together for a night of Scotch

Guest Post: David Breger, Co-President of the Berkeley Digital Media and Entertainment Club (DMEC) gives us a peek into the different events hosted by clubs at Haas. This recap is cross posted on the DMEC Blog.

One of the best things about DMEC is our extremely passionate and fun alumni base.  Because the Club is less than a decade old, DMEC alums are recent alums that are awesome to hang out with and are always working on the most interesting things.

Case in point: a couple weeks ago was our First Annual DMEC Past & Present Scotch Tasting.  Sponsored by Johnny Walker, we held the event at the Yardbarker offices in San Francisco, started by two DMEC co-founders, Pete Vlastelica and Jack Kloster.

The night began with appetizers and cocktails, where dozens of DMEC members and alums alike had the chance to talk and catch up with one another.  Then began the scotch tasting.  The Master of Scotch explained to us the differences between the five types of Johnny Walker scotch we tasted that night: Red, Gold, Black, Green, and Blue.  It was a great chance to interact with DMEC students and alums working in the digital media and entertainment industries over some fantastic scotch!



The power of the network

Hello again and of course welcome to the class of 2011! I have been back at work for a few months now and actually shouldn’t be posting on this student blog anymore, but I wanted to share an episode that really proved to me just how incredibly powerful the Haas network can be.

About a week ago I was researching a new topic for a consulting project and sent out a brief note through my class email list asking for any ideas or hints about the topic. I was hoping to maybe get one or two contacts or a helpful article (it wasn’t the most mainstream topic), but within just a few hours I received a total of 10 responses, all of which were extremely helpful and insightful.

As you can see, the network is alive and working. And it also serves as a hub for meetings and visits: Being in Berlin I have already had the pleasure to meet or host several of my traveling classmates and I look forward to an Oktoberfest meet-up in Munich soon.


Connect now, ask questions later

I started connecting with my classmates and class of 08 through LinkedIn. I also receive many requests from Professional and Social Networking sites I haven’t heard of. One of my friend apologized to me on a mail from her asking me to connect through one such site, DooStang. She said that a friendly “applet” from that site read her Gmail address book and email addresses of anyone she had ever communicated with and automatically sent them a “connect with me” request. Unknowingly she had spammed all her friends and contacts.

Do we need all these multiple social and professional networking tools? During a BayCHI event, I was talking to a Google engineer who works on Search quality. He said he is on LinkedIn, MySpace, Facebook etc and added, “these days you have to, there are layers of complex connections evolving and it is too early to take sides”.

At Haas one has many opportunities to network with many different people. Haas Alumni services has a group on LinkedIn that puts you in touch with Haas alumni on LinkedIn. But do we go overboard and start joining every new site that comes along?

Just because we talked to an alumni or someone we met at a Haas event, should we send them a LinkedIn invite?

Is the power of our network lies in its size?

Do all the professional networking sites play on our need to connect and in the name of making it easier for us make us send “Connect with me” emails?

Oh, yes, finally, would you accept my LinkedIn Invite ?