April 2013: Connection Event Energizes the Alumni Community

Jenna Chamblin (@NIU), Patrick Jiang (NU), Mats Johansen (@NU) and Yi Wang (@NU)

(By Karen Raiti Thigpen MI '96, US '97)

Thanks to AIESEC Life Hub Leader, Sarah Ketvirtis, the alumni community was not only ""connected"" last Friday night in Chicago - it was energized! More than 44 alumni and guests turned out at Chicago's famed Jake Melnick's along with 20 students from AIESEC Northern Illinois, AIESEC Northwestern and the new initiative group starting at the University of Chicago. Attendees laughed, networked, and met new friends. This effort was part of a nationwide charge given to our hubs to hold Spring events that would both draw new alumni to the hub while generating traineeship referrals for the students.

The attending alumni at Friday's event represented 7 countries around the globe, 16 local committees from across the U.S. and 4 decades of AIESEC history.  While the bulk of the event was comprised of alumni casually mixing and meeting, a small formal agenda afforded time for some key speakers to update the alumni on AIESEC's exchange program, including the recently launched Executive AIESECer Program. Most notably, alumnus Sal Venegas, Director of Learning and Development for Walgreens, took time to share details of how exactly he's working to bring traineeships to his company and encouraged other alums to do the same.

All in all, many new friendships were established and more than two dozen traineeship leads were formally submitted.  One might say that the AIESEC Life Chicago Hub most certainly did its job of providing a true ""connection"" event and demonstrated their commitment to the growth of AIESEC's exchange program.

Want to get involved with the Chicago Hub?  Contact Sarah Ketvirtis at sarahketvirtis@gmail.com. 

Welcoming our Trainee Guests Adel Zaitri (Trainee), Sarah Ketvirtis (Michigan) Andrea Velez Ramirez (Trainee) Sveta Mardar (Trainee)
Program Opening Sarah Ketvirtis Chicago Hub Leader
Karan Goenka LCP @NU speaking about AIESEC’s Exchange Program

Keynote Sal Venegas (Marquette)
Keynote Sal Venegas (Marquette) with Drawing Winner Karma Kakadia (NIU)
Abdullah Kahn (NU) and Yang Xu (@NU)

Bar view
Ben Murunga (Kenya) and Katie Sassaman (GT)
Bob Dustin (Purdue), Andrea Velez Ramirez (Trainee) and Tina Chung Hurley (Illinois)

Jenna Chamblin (@NIU) and Helen Lee ( @NU)
Jenny Hu (@NU) and Kirstine Bernes (Trainee)
Karen Raiti Thigpen (Michigan) and J.T. Allen (Michigan)
Kevin Cooper (Illinois), Colleen Tomanek (Illinois) Sveta Mardar (Trainee), Oliver Dewgard (Chicago) and Kim Cozzi (Guest)
Dagan Bora (Oregon)

Arnold Kas (NU) and Thomas Wehrner (GT)
Leonard Pannek (@NIU) and Karma Kakadia (NIU)
Mark Tomkins (NU) and Sal Venegas (Marquette)

Networking Event
Nick Springmeyer(Kansas) and Lisa Jakstas(Marquette)
Oliver Dewgard (Chicago) and Thomas Wolfe (VPICX NIU)

Ben Murunga (Kenya) and Yi Wang (@NU)
Roland Calupe (Purdue) and Patrick Jiang (NU)
AIESECers and Trainees relaxing after the event

Welcoming our Trainee Guests Adel Zaitri (Trainee), Sarah Ketvirtis (Michigan) Andrea Velez Ramirez (Trainee) Sveta Mardar (Trainee)

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