This Virtual Life
To help clubs carry on in these times of social distancing, the Wharton Global Clubs Network now offers premium access to Zoom. Announced this spring, the new resource was used by more than 25 clubs and accessed by 1,300-plus event attendees in its first three months. The Wharton Club of Charlotte was the first to use the platform, hosting a May webinar featuring former Wells Fargo chief economist John Silvia for a pandemic-focused economic update.
Strategies for Better Leadership
Buenos Aires, Argentina
To provide leaders with additional tools for challenging times, the Penn-Wharton Club of Argentina hosted a virtual event in August featuring management professor Michael Useem in a dialogue on key issues for the coronavirus era and beyond. Topics included vital steps to take when in charge; insights into applying strategic thinking, decisiveness, and persuasive communications during crises; and thoughts on the uncertainty, threats, and stress we face today.
Analyzing Immigration Policy
The topic of immigration is arguably more contentious than ever before. Addressing it head-on, the Penn-Wharton Club of Toronto organized a virtual panel discussion in September on U.S. immigration policy, Canadian policy, and the interplay between them. Speakers included Marco Mendicino, Canadian minister of immigration, refugees, and citizenship; Wharton professor Zeke Hernandez; Allison Pasique, head of campus recruitment for the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board; and Alexandra Hambrock, head of Canadian recruiting at McKinsey & Company.
Faculty Thought Leadership — Live or On Demand
Throughout the pandemic, Wharton Lifelong Learning has delivered online education through its Wharton Webinar Series, with sessions specifically addressing the current situation. Past speakers have included Mauro Guillén, Sigal Barsade, Barbara Kahn, and other Wharton professors. A series focused on Analytics at Wharton launched in October, with topics including hiring biases (Corinne Low), real estate (Maisy Wong), and how Greece is using machine learning to manage COVID-19 (Hamsa Bastani). The final program on October 30, with Ken Moon, will examine worker turnover and burnout using big data. For more information and webinar archives, see the Wharton Alumni website. And for additional virtual alumni events, visit the Wharton Webinar Series website.
After COVID-19 ended the Wharton Undergraduate Finance and Technology Group’s plans to visit several New York finance firms this spring, the student group turned disappointment into a virtual networking event with top alumni investors in Asia: Link REIT’s George Hongchoy WG91, Two Sigma Asia Pacific’s Kenny Lam W96, Genesis Capital’s Richard Peng WG03, DT Capital Partners’ Joe Tian WG98, and YiMei Capital’s Judy Ye WG01. Read more about the club’s two-day virtual trek in this issue’s “View From Locust Walk” undergraduate student essay.
Education Through Fashion
Growing up in Nigeria, Tomide Awe WG17 was able to afford a quality education when other girls her age couldn’t — a fact that didn’t escape her. Now, as the founder of handbag maker Olori, she’s paying tuition for girls in underserved African communities with proceeds from her company’s sales. See our Watchlist for more on Awe’s efforts.
A Historic Global Forum
Alumni were invited to attend two virtual events in June as the 55th Wharton Global Forum in Singapore moved online for the first time. The opening session — two fireside chats moderated by John Tsai G01 WG01 — featured discussions on geopolitics, leadership, and business in Singapore. Jing Zhang WG09 moderated the second event, with Wharton marketing professor Peter Fader introducing a new method — “customer-based corporate valuation” — for valuing businesses and answering questions from alumni tuning in from around the world.
Published as “Wharton’s Global Impact” in the Fall/Winter 2020 issue of Wharton Magazine.