The 32 D'Amore-McKim School of Business student clubs joined the University in transitioning to online operations in March 2020 amid the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, strengthening their groups' relationships and fostering a larger community during this unprecedented time.
Group meetings, community events, award ceremonies–for D'Amore-McKim student clubs, the semester finished in the virtual realm without losing its momentum. However, maintaining the drive to complete the projects they had previously started would not be without difficulty.
“The uncertainty of the entire situation and being aware and supportive of the different ways people were affected by the pandemic was perhaps the biggest challenge faced by the group,” says Karan Kishorepuria, DMSB ‘21, president of NU Impact, Northeastern's student-led impact investing initiative and investment fund. “But though times are challenging, I felt our community and bond grow stronger.”
Kishorepuria, part of the founding analyst team for NU Impact, recognized the importance of keeping NU Impact members connected, even if that meant coordinating online meetings across multiple time zones. Almost all 54 members attended the group's weekly meetings, calling in at odd hours from all over the world to check in with one another and to refocus on NU Impact's semester goals after several scheduled, on-campus events were cancelled.
Northeastern's student-led FinTech initiative, Disrupt, faced similar challenges. In addition to coordinating meetings for global attendees, Julia McCarthy, DMSB ‘20, had to react quickly and work with her leadership team to transition all of Disrupt's operations and events online as its president and co-founder. McCarthy credits her events team for seemlessly transitioning the semester's remaining events online efficiently and increasing the event frequency to two per week for the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester.
“We've been able to engage speakers from all over the world,” McCarthy shares about Disrupt's online event strategy. “If we were in Boston, we wouldn't have been able to get these talented industry leaders to our campus. Our online Zoom chats have been more intimate than our event programs and have allowed our community direct access to CEOs, founders, presidents, and managing directors within FinTech.”
With many D'Amore-McKim student clubs working to create virtual events for their communities, opportunities to collaborate arose. The inaugural D'Amore-McKim Student Leadership Council, a council of 18 club leaders dedicated to fostering a community among the student leaders, established a forum for club collaboration in February 2020. The Council connected Kishorepuria and McCarthy, which allowed NU Impact and Disrupt to jointly host two events online via Instagram Live about financial technologies and investing this semester.
Other student clubs also took advantage of the Council's forum. Women in Finance, Northeastern's lifelong mentorship network of professional women, co-hosted an Instagram Live event with Disrupt for a candid conversation about navigating a career in finance as a woman. NU Impact partnered with Delta Sigma Pi, Northeastern's professional, co-ed fraternity for business majors, for an event about venture capital.
As this semester comes to a close, D'Amore-McKim student clubs will continue to work virtually. Both Kishorepuria and McCarthy agree that an unexpected silver lining during the COVID-19 pandemic was watching their individual communities grow stronger.
“I have seen our community grow even stronger and feel [the members] are more connected as they realize we are not just a club, but a family,” says Kishorepuria. “Though we might be in different parts of the world, we are in these challenging times together and have one another to lean on.”
Learn more about Huskies at Home at News@Northeastern.
The D'Amore-McKim School of Business community remains connected to one another as well as committed to learning and working remotely. Throughout the next few months, we will be showcasing a day in the life of different community members.
IDEA is a student-led venture accelerator that supports entrepreneurial pursuits in the Northeastern community. Niklas Janssen, DMSB'21, and Jake Willis, CAMD'20, shared their experiences with us including co-op, their roles in IDEA, and an overall day in their lives on our 24 hrs of IDEA Instagram story.
The Northeastern University Private Equity and Venture Capital Club provides students with the opportunity to learn more about the private equity and venture capital industries. They strive to allow students to create connections with their peers, faculty, and professionals within the private equity and venture capital industries, in hopes that each member comes away with valuable experiences that stem from club activities.
Recently, different PEVC board members shared their club experience and told us how they've been staying connected with one another at home via Instagram stories.