Food aside, the best dinner parties have this in common: Guests leave with new connections and better still, new insights. The LKY School’s Indonesia Alumni Chapter Committee scored on both counts when they hosted a reunion dinner on 30 September 2015, bringing together 22 alumni, three staff members, and two representatives from the Singapore Embassy in Jakarta for a night of networking and inspiration.
The dinner took place in Jakarta; it was held at the OPEN Restaurant (at DoubleTree by Hilton) and featured a diverse crowd who bonded over their memories of the LKY School. Notably, senior alumni from as far back as 2002 were in attendance, as well as recent graduates, and together they represented a wide range of industries. Those in the public sector held positions in government departments such as the Ministry of Trade and the Indonesian House of Representatives, while others were from intergovernmental or non-governmental organisations (The World Bank, USAID) and private sector firms, including tobacco company Sampoerna, pharmaceuticals giant GlaxoSmithKline, and public relations agency Indopacific Edelman.
A special guest at the dinner was Douglas Broderick, the UN secretary-general’s designated representative in Indonesia. Several alumni members had a chance to chat with Douglas about his work—besides the UN, Douglas has also worked with the Catholic Relief Services in various locations, including Iraq and the West Bank and Gaza.
Bernard Lee, Senior Manager at the LKY School’s Alumni Relations Office, gave a short speech about the School’s “F.U.N.” strategy to help students stay connected after graduation. In essence, the School hopes to build Far-reaching networks that promote Unity and school spirit, and it is seeking Novel ideas that will support and engage its graduates. In his update on the Alumni Relations Office’s activities, Bernard announced that an Alumni Survey would soon be conducted worldwide, to understand the impact of an LKY School education on alumni, as well as to gather feedback and suggestions to improve the LKY School.
Towards the end of the evening, the Alumni Relations Office presented Andre Sebastian, the Indonesia Alumni Chapter President, with a token of appreciation—a book authored by the LKY School’s Dean Kishore Mahbubani, titled “Can Singapore Survive?”
The general sentiment from the dinner was that the Indonesian alumni took pride in having graduated from the LKY School, and were eager to help promote their alma mater through their personal and professional networks. They also expressed willingness to participate in information sessions for new and potential students. Through the dinner, a link between the Alumni Relations team and the Indonesia Alumni Chapter Committee was forged, which, going forward, will enable the Alumni Relations team to better serve alumni in Indonesia.