01 Dec 1996

HBS Alumni Association Board of Directors: President's Report


As HBS graduates, our contacts with each other and with the School are among the strongest and most enduring assets of our Harvard Business School education. Alumni connectedness is a vital mutual concern for the School and the Alumni Association. Dean Clark has urged us to view HBS as a home base, the center of a network that provides rich opportunities for professional and intellectual growth. For me, that network has also been important because of the lasting friendships it has fostered and the doors it has opened for meaningful personal growth.

Communication within such a large alumni community - there are over 64,000 graduates of the School's MBA and executive education programs all over the world - is a significant challenge. Every two months, in addition to the most impressive Class Notes section of any alumni publication, the HBS Bulletin also publishes in-formation about new and ongoing HBS initiatives, faculty research, and alumni profiles. Many of you have noticed the magazine's new "Alumni Resources" section, which offers specific information on a wide variety of alumni activities designed to strengthen the alumni connection:

  • Club Meetings
  • Global Alumni Conferences
  • Reunions
  • Local Club Contacts
  • Special-Interest Alumni Groups
  • Alumni Career Services - a source of career information and job listings, as well as a source of candidates for positions in your company
  • Executive Education Programs
  • HBS Publishing's Alumni Plus Program
  • HBS Alumni Events
  • HBS Fund Activities
  • Contacts with Professors

This list considers many of the more traditional methods of interaction. I'd also like to highlight some recent developments in an area that has been growing significantly in the last few years at HBS: the HBS Electronic Network. Two years ago, the School formally established a relationship with America Online (AOL) that allowed alumni to have faster access to HBS and other alumni through an online alumni directory, alumni bulletin boards, HBS message centers, special-interest chat groups, calendars of alumni events, an on-campus directory of faculty and staff, club events and contacts, and the Bulletin and Class Notes.

Tremendous progress has been made since that first venture into online services. Much of the School has now moved to an Internet-based system with direct access to the World Wide Web. Be sure to take advantage of all the exciting information available on the School's new home page, which can be accessed at: . As part of the new technology initiative, every HBS graduate with a current e-mail address will soon be assigned a permanent, lifelong HBS e-mail address. This will serve as a pointer for incoming mail to be sent to your current e-mail address. Plans call for this service to be up and running in the first quarter of 1997.

As you can see, the possibilities for networking and staying connected are continually expanding. I hope you will take advantage of them! Don't hesitate to e-mail me any suggestions you might have to expand our networking capabilities.

I'd also like to remind you to mark your calendar for this spring's Global Alumni Conference in Hong Kong.

-Cathy Connett, November 1996


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