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Almost 100 attended the 2014 Lubar School Student and Alumni annual networking event at UWM.

Lubar alumni group aims to be part of the solution

A new group at UW-Milwaukee is working on changing the perception by some that the university is a commuter school, a second-tier college in a city with more prestigious institutions.

The Lubar School of Business Alumni Group, formed in July 2011, has made it its mission to make an impact in Milwaukee. In fact, according to Jason Eggert, the president of the group, that's what sets UWM alumni apart – their unique focus on the city that is home to their alma mater.

The first major event hosted by the group was "The Business of Freshwater," in June of 2012. The event was held at The School of Freshwater Sciences and featured Rich Musen, CEO of Badger Meter as speaker. The evening focused around a discussion about the current and future impact of the growing field on Milwaukee as a whole.

This Wednesday, the group will hold its biggest event at SURG on the Water, where Sheldon B. Lubar will discuss his thoughts and visions for the city. Eggert expects to draw a crowd of more than 110 people from the business community.

Eggert says the group started with four guys around a table musing over the lack of connectivity they felt to the Lubar School after graduation. With UWM's assistance, they accessed a database of alumni contact information and sent out emails to gauge interest.

Over a few cocktails at Harry's in Shorewood, the official group was born.

"Networking was the biggest aim," says Eggert. "In business, it's important to use your network to succeed. We wanted to give back to the UWM community because we got so much out of our education and relationships there."

Since the initial meeting and first major event, the group has hosted annual student-alumni networking events, holiday parties, and "Vision in the Valley," at Twisted Fisherman, featuring Laura Bray, Executive Director of Menomonee Valley Partners as speaker.

"Your experience after school starts during school. Don't wait to get involved," says Eggert, a 2010 alum and vice president at Associated Bank.

Registration for Wednesday's event is closed, but the group is hoping to stage its next event in the winter. To join the group, Eggert suggests visiting its Facebook page.


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