Mumbai Alumni Launch
King’s launches alumni branch in Mumbai
King’s College London, one of the world’s top 30 universities, has launched its first alumni branch in Mumbai to celebrate its growing connections with one of India’s most dynamic cities. Professor Keith Hoggart FKC, Vice-Principal (Arts & Sciences) at King’s, officially opened the new branch at a lunch event on Sunday 2 October in Colaba.
King’s currently has about 700 alumni in India, mainly in Delhi and Mumbai, with the number expected to double in the next three years. Well known alumni from Mumbai include Bijesh Thakker, philanthropist and former Managing Partner of the law-firm Thakker & Thakker; and Meghna Ghai Puri, President of Whistling Woods International – Asia’s largest media arts institute and one of the world’s leading film schools.
Delhi already has a thriving alumni branch (KCLAD), and former students in Mumbai have now come together to launch their own local committee. The launch event in Mumbai was therefore an opportunity for local alumni to be introduced to their new branch representatives, and meet the King’s alumni delegation travelling from London. The founding committee will also guide the branch through its first steps – establishing its aims, organising its first events, and leading it towards an AGM and elections in April 2013.
Commenting on the new alumni branch, Professor Hoggart said: ‘Mumbai is at the heart of the thriving Indian economy, and is undeniably going to be a major global player in the 21st century. King’s is looking to enhance the level and range of activities in Mumbai, so I am absolutely delighted that we’re starting an alumni group here; it means we can bring together not only existing faculty and students but also alumni across the region who want to remain part of the wider King’s community.’
Alumni branches serve as a focus for those living far from London and encourage the networking that is crucial to a successful career – particularly for recent graduates. They allow older generations to advise younger members on the direction they might wish their careers to take and enable friendships to be formed between people whose paths might not otherwise cross.
Almost 300 Indian students are at King’s this year and the number is growing rapidly. The first students have now arrived at King’s India Institute, the prestigious new centre for teaching and research on contemporary India, due to be officially launched in January 2012.
Professor Sunil Khilnani, who joined the India Institute as its Director and Professor of Politics in June 2011, said: ‘We are delighted to be launching our teaching, research and policy programmes at the King's India Institutes this autumn – we are already intensely engaged in expanding and deepening the King's relationship with India, and our Indian alumni will be a crucial partner in building our activities in India and in London.
‘Mumbai, as India's global hub, will be a vital point of connection for us, and speaking personally for a moment, as someone whose adopted home has become Mumbai I am particularly pleased at the creation of our new alumni circle in this great city.