Students Socialize Beyond the MEM Classroom

A diverse and talented student body is one of the most unique and celebrated aspects of Northwestern’s MEM program. Alumni and current students alike repeatedly emphasize that they learn not only from their instructors and coursework, but from their classmates as well. The dinner and socializing event hosted by Professor Mohan Rao on Friday, February 22, was perfect evidence of the exceptional range of industries, levels of experiences, and backgrounds represented in the  NUMEM program.

Nearly half of the current MEM student body showed up in time for appetizers and stayed well past dessert at Professor Rao’s beautiful Kenilworth home. MEM Seniors discussed entrepreneurship plans and new students shared their excitement about already implementing new business strategies. Full-time international students mingled with part-time students working in industries as diverse as Pepsi-Cola and Information Technologies. The various groups gathered briefly for a welcome from Director Mark Werwath before dinner. After thanking Professor Mao and his wife for their generous hospitality, Professor Werwath shared good news that the program is stronger than ever and shows no sign of slowing down.

Professor Rao hosted the event is his beautiful home in Kenilworth.
Professor Rao hosted the event is his beautiful home in Kenilworth.

Professors Mike Watson and Dan Brown joined the event as well as MEM alumni and Advisory Board Members John C. Nelson and James Martucci. The MEM Advisory Board meets once a year and collaborates to discuss the scope, vision, and ever-changing nature of the NUMEM program. “I’m not sure that any of the classes I took are still in the program,” Mr. Martucci told student Victor Moran over dinner. “Maybe Finance and Accounting.” A few core classes have been part of the MEM program from its start in 1976, but the program is always adapting and adding new material to fit a constantly changing market.

Advisory board members share their experiences with current students
Advisory board members share their experiences with current students

Assistant Director Susan Fox announced that the event was “the most successful event for current students that we have had with almost half of all current students attending.”One hundred to one hundred fifty people attend our MEM Bonfire and Tailgate and Football Game events but those include alumni too.” Throughout the event, discussions ranged from industry practices, to career development, to education, and everything in-between. As student lingered late into the evening, it seems that no matter what their background or enrollment in the program, they share Professor Werwath’s hope that “this event will be the first of many.”

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