Innovation at Haas


Profesor Solomon Darwin is teaching an engineering class this semester on “Smart Cities.” This class welcomed primarily engineering and Haas students and challenged them to build a prototype that will enhance certain elements for the city of Visakhapatnam in India. Each group is working on a smart solution for transportation, food and water, education, security and more. The class will make their final presentations to the Indian government and corporate executives in January.

Innovation has been a long tradition at Haas and with the encouragement of our faulty and professors, our students have the ability to impact real change. If you have a passion or interest I encourage you to pursue it! Take advantage of our alumni and on campus resources. We have experts on entrepreneurship, technology, and innovation right at our fingertips. Visit the resource centers or make an appointment with faculty and see what they are working on. The wheels of innovation never stop spinning so hop on board and go for a ride.

The Haas Undergraduate Blog Team (2015-2016)

The Haas Undergraduate Blog is a platform dedicated to providing an “insider perspective” into life as a student at Haas. It aims to serve as a valuable resource for Haas alumni, as well as current, non-major, incoming, and prospective Haas undergraduates, who are interested in learning about the culture and current happenings in the prestigious business program.

The Haas Blog is recruiting for new members to join our team. Bloggers do not have to be experienced, but should enjoy writing short blog posts about Haas-related topics that they feel enthusiastic about. Authors have freedom and flexibility to choose whatever subjects to write about as long as they commit to publishing at least two article per month.

Visit our recruitment page for more information.

Presently, we have a diverse group of bloggers ranging from various backgrounds: continuing, transfer, international, and out-of-state, we have it all. With that being said, I introduce you the team for the academic school year of 2015-2016!


UG Blog Welcome Dinner with our Advisor, Dinko Lakic


Hi everyone! My name is Isabelle Lee and I am a 4th year Business Administration major. I was born and raised in Southern California. This past summer I had the opportunity to work at Yelp in San Francisco in their marketing & strategy division. My professional interests include Investment Management , Risk Consulting, Technology, and Social Entrepreneurship.

In Berkeley, Isabelle is actively involved in Haas Student Business Association as well as the Korean American Student Association. In my free time I enjoy creating memories with friends and family, traveling, fashion, trying out new places to eat, and playing sports such as volleyball, lacrosse, and golf. She joined the blog as Co-Manager to create a living record of her time at Haas as well as share Haas-related opportunities to her fellow peers and ultimately write about anything that’s on her mind.

IMG_0974Hello! My name is Sonia Seghir and I am a 4th year Business Administration major. I was a junor transfer from Diablo Valley College. Wohoo! Go transfers! I am interested in pursing marketing and this past summer I had the opportunity to intern with Unilever in Chicago.

I was born in Paris and then spent much of my childhood living in Algeria. I moved to the United States when I was eight and have lived in the Bay Area since. In my free time, I enjoy hanging out with friends and family, traveling, supporting my brothers’ soccer games, and working with the youth.

As a prospective student, I enjoyed following the Haas Undergraduate Student Blog and hearing the insider stories of such a close-knit community. Today, I am very excited to be a part of the Haas Undergraduate Blog to share my experience and journey. I look forward to meeting many of you and creating #haassome memories!


My name is Kendal Madden, and I am excited to finish my last year at Haas while being able to share my perspective with you through the Haas Undergraduate Students Blog.  I began at Cal as a freshman in the fall of 2012, and by the end of my sophomore year declared as a Business Administration and Media Studies simultaneous degree major.

While at Cal I have become very passionate about my involvement with the organization Berkeley Women in Business.  I currently hold the position of President and work to provide the best resources available to women looking to develop themselves professionally and navigate their way through corporate America.

Off campus I am pursuing my interest in the online media industry. This summer I worked for CBS Interactive as an intern for the Mobile Product team. Outside of work and school my hobbies include painting, martial arts, and travel.  I absolutely love the outdoors- hiking, camping, and exploring Berkeley!  With my wide breadth of interests, I am always open to new experiences. Writing for the Haas Undergraduate Students Blog gives me the unique opportunity to share those experiences with you!

jessicaJessica Ou is a 4th year Business Administration and Social Welfare major. Outside of her studies, she is passionate about human rights, women and economic empowerment, and social entrepreneurship. She hopes to pursue a career in investment banking and eventually enter the public policy and non-profit sector.

At Haas, Jessica is involved in Delta Sigma Pi and Berkeley Women in Business. She has been a research apprentice for Professor Jennifer Chatman and is a volunteer mentor in the Young Entrepreneurs at Haas program. She currently teaches the only student-led personal finance class on campus, UGBA 198 Money Management Coaching. She is excited to blog about life at Haas and highlight the amazing things Haas students do.

Outside of Haas, Jessica serves as a UC System-wide Representative, representing over 250,000 UC students as the student representative on the UCUES Standing Committee. She is an Advisory Board member for UNICEF’s Chinese Children Initiative, an Executive Council member for the United Nations International Youth Council, a Youth Advisory Council member for Crisis Text Line–the world’s first 24/7 teen text hotline, and the California Youth Ambassador for Youth Service America.

In her free time, Jessica spends many hours a week counseling teens in crisis and is a contributor for USA TODAY and a blogger for the Huffington Post. She also has been web programming and graphic designing since she was six years old, and has recently designed the UI of three apps.

IMG_20150405_125641 (1)Katherine Krive is currently a 3rd year Business Administration major pursuing her interests in marketing and consulting. She recently transferred from the Santa Rosa Junior College and is thrilled to continue living in the Bay Area. Having traveled through over sixteen countries she can state definitively that Northern California is her favorite place to be.

She is enjoying the extremely social and stimulating atmosphere at Haas and looks forward to meeting more of her class in the next two years. In her free time she also enjoys eating delicious food, posting that delicious food on social media, and spending time with the amazing people she’s met here in Berkeley. Before applying to transfer, Katherine utilized the Haas Undergraduate Student Blog to learn more about the culture and program here at Haas. She is excited to be able to give back to the community by sharing her experiences through the blog!

nicminNicolas Min is a third year student pursuing a degree in Business Administration at the Haas School of Business. He was born in San Diego, but has spent most of his life at Seoul, Korea. He has traveled a lot in his life spending years at Frankfurt, Germany and Shanghai, China. Just before coming to Berkeley, he went to high school in Dallas, Texas (Fun Fact: He has never gone to a same school more than two years, yet).

In Berkeley, he is involved in the ASUC working in the Legal Office as well as in the research project on U.S. Economy and Globalization under Professor Edelstein’s mentorship. As he wrote in his Haas application, he values being a “student always” and hopes to pursue a career where he can enjoy learning something every day.

He joined the blog team this semester wanting to share his thoughts about Haas and present diverse aspects of the school to both Haas and non-Haas majors at Berkeley.

Sammy Tong is a third year studying Business Administration and Sociology. She is what a lot of people call a Third Culture Kid. Growing up in Hong Kong, Canada, and Maryland, she has grown to love new environments.

Sammy has always enjoyed creative writing but this will be her first official blog besides those ones she had here and there. She wanted to join the Haas Undegrad Blog because she will be studying abroad Spring semester and wants to share the full experience with her peers. Many say that studying abroad as a junior is difficult due to recruiting so she wants to share her tips and tricks on how to overcome this barrier!

DanaSiegelHeadShot (1)I’ve transitioned from a Newport Beach island dweller to an enthusiastic Cal Bear. I’m proud to have earned a place on the Dean’s Honor Roll as a third year, double major in the Haas Undergraduate Business Administration program and Legal Studies in The College of Letters and Science. I’m an active participant in the Berkeley community through my roles as Vice President of Order of Omega, an all Greek honor and leadership society, and as a member of the Student Gift Campaign. My experiences are widely varied and include planning large, philanthropic fundraising events, most recently in Berkeley as Vice President of Philanthropic Service for the Sigma Kappa sorority, benefiting the Alzheimer’s Association. I’ve had an interesting journalism career as Editor of three high school papers (two of which were launched by me). I have created digital marketing, designs, and advertisements. I’ve combined an active social life with serious academic pursuits. I spent this past summer taking law courses from The University of Massachusetts, Amherst. My involvement in Haas and my legal studies course work have reaffirmed my desire to continue my education in law and business. The intricacies, complications, craftsmanship, and creativity used in navigating our legal system and managing businesses are both intriguing and exciting to me.  GO BEARS!

Yifei Ding_008499_ (1)

Yifei is a junior majoring in Business Administration and Economics. She is a Bay Area native from Fremont, California. Her interests include singing, playing guitar, swimming, and scouting out new coffee shops. On campus, she is involved in Alpha Kappa Psi, URAP (Undergrad Research), and YEAH (Young Entrepreneurs at Haas). This past summer, Yifei interned as a business analyst at Cisco in Global Strategy and Services and at Gainsight in Business Operations.


This is my third year at Cal but my first year in Haas. I am super excited to be apart of the blog team. I grew up in the Central Valley (yes there exists a region outside of NorCal and SoCal) in the very hot town of Fresno,CA. I am really passionate about traveling but my absolute favorite thing to do is read. I loooove historical fiction novels! I also recently got into cooking so if you have any recipes you want to share, don’t hesitate to look me up!

Professionally, my goal is to start my own business one day. I am considering the hospitality industry although I have a passion for nonprofit work that focuses on education. I am involved in several student organizations on campus as well as Stiles Hall.

SooSongHello, I’m Soo! I was born in Seoul, Korea but consider my hometown to be Palo Alto, CA. I’m currently double majoring in Linguistics and Business Administration, which combines my love of languages and people with my interest in content creation and CSR. On campus, I am heavily involved with an amazing group called Blueprint. We create technologies for nonprofits powering change in the community and aim to link tech with social good. I’m also an avid musician, having played cello for over a decade.
As I study abroad at Hong Kong University this semester, I’m excited to share some of my experiences and lessons via this blog. I hope you can join me as I keep learning and writing!”

As you can see we have an amazing group who is dedicated to bring the best content on the blog. Anyone that wants to work with this awesome group of people please go ahead apply as we are currently recruiting for more bloggers. We look forward to receiving your applications!

Dean’s Undergraduate Reception


On Wednesday, September 16th, 2015, the Haas School of Business hosted the semesterly Dean’s Undergraduate Reception. Students, faculty, and staff gathered to mingle and celebrate the start of the new semester. The event was nothing but spectacular, filled with valuable information and personal insights from Dean Rich Lyons. During the reception Dean Rich Lyons was put in the “hot seat”, which allowed students to get their burning questions answered. Here is some of what Dean Rich Lyons had to say:

IMG_2931If you could go back to senior year at Haas, what would be on your bucket list?

As many of us are encouraged to do, Dean Lyons wished he connected and took advantage of the other departments much more to really soak in and make the most of the different classes offered here at Berkeley. For him, this meant learning more about engineering. He also advised us seniors to not forget that it is never too late to take advantages of the classes a top school like Berkeley has to offer.

Can you provide a piece of advice for transfers or incoming business students for the short 2 years here?

The business school experience both at the undergraduate and graduate level consists of three parts for success. There is the “knowing part,” which is about knowledge and learning. This is the things and information you have to know, understand, and deliver as a student. Then there is the “doing part” of the program, which is the movement toward experiential learning. This is knowing how to do in a coached, guided way. Lastly, and perhaps the most important is the “being” or character building part. This is the part that changes you, the part where you come out a different person on the other side. It is about the shift or transformation in how we perceive our identity and ourselves. This is where we shift form “other people do that” to “I do that.”

What makes Haas THE best?

It’s no surprise that there are many extraordinaryIMG_2930 business schools out there. However, Haas is different, because it is one is the most “owned” of universities. We are the only public university business school. Berkeley is a social mobility institution. What does this mean? Berkeley has more disadvantaged, low-income student than Stanford has students. It shows the scale of the good that Berkeley is doing for society. But there are 3 things that make Haas its own “owned category”: place, people, and culture. Location is near the San Francisco & Silicon Valley, which is the envy of the world. Second, is the outstanding people that make our culture. Our culture and shared values are very unique here at Haas. The 4 Defining Principles make us who we are and different from any other business school.

Which of the 4 Defining Principles do you associate yourself with the most?

I think back to my parents. All parents have values they want to instill in you. So looking back, I see my parents in all four principles but one jumps out. Confidence Without Attitude. I can still hear my father talking about phony people; inauthentic, phony people. This notion of confidence is yours for the making.

Lastly, where do you get the nice flow with your hair?

We had to ask! Can you picture Dean Lyons with an afro? Well, back in the day, our very own dean used to rock the afro. Today, he keeps his hair short, because it is simply easiest for him. So how does the Dean Lyons keep his hair so nice? Well, he shared that 4 out of 5 of his last haircuts were at Supercuts. Comes to show, you don’t need a fancy salon to rock the hair!

Class of 2017 Haas Undergraduate Student Orientation

This article was written by Katherine Krive (BS ’17) 

After two years of incredibly hard work academically, professionally, and personally, three hundred and eighty five students gathered together for the first time as the Haas Undergraduate Class of 2017.haas1

Orientation began on Monday, August 24th, at 9am, as students checked in with their respective cohort leaders and caught up with friends in the courtyard, before trickling in to Anderson Auditorium.

The program started with a welcome from Dean Rich Lyons. He congratulated us on our achievements and reminded us that we are all meant to be in Haas. Throughout his speech he talked about our four defining principles: Beyond Yourself, Student Always, Confidence without Attitude, and Question the Status Quo. He encouraged us to think about how we could exemplify these traits throughout the next two years of school and after graduation as “co-owners” of Haas. Later, Professor Todd Fitch emphasized how important it is that we find a way to balance the competition that business students find so dear, with the collaboration and teamwork that will help us through our years in school and beyond. We also heard from Alessandra Demmons, Associate Director of Undergraduate Student & Alumni Engagement at Haas and David Woodward, Career Counselor for Haas. They gave us valuable advice on leveraging our alumni network and preparing for the notorious internship and career search.

Lunch came around 1pm, as we all rushed back into the courtyard ready to eat Top Dog and take a moment’s break from the huge amount of information we had received that morning. This was also a chance for students to visit the tables set up by various business-related clubs such as the Latino Business Association (LBSA), Berkeley Women in Business (BWB), and many more. After lunch, we heard from current Haas MBA student and undergrad haas2alumnus, Lucky Sandhu, who spent time reminding us what a fantastic business school we are privileged to be a part of and to utilize the resources that we now have at our fingertips. Orientation wrapped up with a panel of recruiters from various companies, who gave tips on how to prepare for on-campus recruiting. Lastly, we went back out into the courtyard for an ice-cream social, hosted by Abbott Laboratories, where we had a chance to begin networking with the recruiters from our panel earlier—talk about a quick start to the rush of fall recruiting!

Over the past three weeks of school, I have found that the classes are challenging, but by no means overwhelming. The support that we receive from the university, the Haas undergraduate office, and from other students, makes the academic load completely doable. One thing I will say, is that our speakers at orientation did not exaggerate how quickly recruiting for next summer’s internships begins. Within these first three weeks of school we have already had investment banking, consulting, and Big Four forums to recruit for internships and full time positions, not to mention innumerable information sessions for specific companies. As the semester progresses things will only get busier, but we’ve made it this far and can certainly handle whatever school throws at us in the coming months. Congratulations again to my fellow Haasmates, Class of 2017, and Go Bears!

Haas PreCore Program 2015

IMG_3231This summer saw the second year in which the Haas Undergraduate Office offered the PreCore Program. This program is designed to offer Business transfer students a chance to refresh skills they will need during their two years of classes at Haas, while also giving them an opportunity to develop a community with fellow transfers. The two classes covered Quantitative Business Skills, taught by Professor Todd Fitch, and Professional Communications, taught by Professor Ryan Sloan. By the end of the six-week summer session this year, the nineteen students felt prepared to tackle the more rigorous coursework of the fall semester along with recruiting season, supported by the lifelong friendships developed during this time.

Three of this year’s PreCore students offered their personal experiences from this summer’s program:

Katherine Krive

I first heard about PreCore through an email that Barbara Felkins sent out to all Haas transfer applicants. The two classes sounded extremely useful and helpful, so I planned my summer around the possibility that I would get into Berkeley and take summer classes. This was one of the best decisions that I have made while planning my academic career. Despite having to cut an extremely attractive internship shorter in order to fit in PreCore, I would make the same decision again in a heartbeat. There were so many useful things that I gained from this course, such as interview skills, business writing, excel practice, and public speaking. So I’ll narrow it down to two of the things I appreciated the most.

First, in Professor Sloan’s class we developed resume portfolios, in which we went through the entire process of researching an internship, writing a cover letter and targeted resume, as well as practicing mock interviews for the company we chose. This gave me a great chance to hone practical skills, which I will be utilizing for the rest of my life.

Secondly, the sense of community I developed with my classmates is invaluable. Spending over seventeen hours a week for six weeks with these bright, motivated leaders was a privilege. I know that the friendships I have with my PreCore family will last throughout college and into our careers after graduation.

Edgar Okorie

IMG_3197When I first found out about PreCore Program, its hefty price tag made it difficult for me to justify enrolling in the program. However I figured, “Hey, it’s Haas. I’m sure these people probably know something about running a program.”

I could not have been more right. In the span of six weeks, I gained a wealth of invaluable information applicable to my academic, professional, and social life, and formed strong relationships within the PreCore cohort. In addition to the technical materials covered in class, Professor Fitch and Professor Sloan provided numerous nuggets of advice that enriched my overall perspective on leadership and community.

I enrolled in this program hoping to gain some level of preparation for the upcoming school year at Haas—and I did. However, I also gained much more than I could have ever imagined. I am thoroughly grateful for my experiences as a member of the PreCore Program and I strongly encourage future students to take full advantage of such a unique and worthwhile opportunity.

Htet Yi Linn

This summer, I had to choose between going back to my home country and taking the PreCore classes. I eventually chose to enroll in the summer PreCore Program but I wasn’t sure whether I made the right choice until the first day of class. I mean, you know a class would be amazing if the professor promises to teach karate and self-defense skills. The program was indeed an amazing experience. Throughout the course, we polished up our resumes, practiced mock interviews and refreshed our rusty quantitative skills. But that was not all. I gained much more than the communication and quantitative skills that I was expecting to get. The workshops introduced the many student services and resources at Cal to us. We also got a chance to talk to Haas alumni and current Haas students. And most importantly, we established strong bonds with our classmates. All 19 of us came out of the course feeling much more prepared for fall semester. Being in class for five hours straight is long but amazing professors and classmates made six weeks fly by.

IMG_20150813_122259Katherine, Edgar, and Htet, along with Michael Dunn and Yifan Gong, will be hosting a “PreCore 2015 Workshop,” in order to provide a quick overview of the topics to fellow Haas transfer students who were unable to take the two classes this summer. They are excited to welcome David Woodward, from the Career Center, and Alessandra Demmons, from the Haas Alumni Network office, as guest speakers. The PreCore Program was a fantastic way for transfer students to begin the transition into UC Berkeley, and these student facilitators are hoping to help other business transfer students prepare for the fall while also encouraging prospective students to enroll in PreCore next year!

More information on the PreCore Workshop can be found at the event page on Facebook:

Wine, Coffee, and Innovations: Chocolate Hackathon

DSC03331The Decal “Wine, Coffee, and Innovations” led us in to visit a small chocolate factory in Berkeley. TCHO Chocolates have been around for seven years now, starting their business in San Francisco. Looking for a new venue, they found a new home in Berkeley.

TCHO Chocolates stands for exquisite chocolates. With a combination of Fair Trade and passionate Know-How from Brad Kintzer, they built up something very special. The high quality of the final product begins with the high quality of the bean. Since many cacao farmers have never seen chocolate in their lives, it is important to educate them and equip them with the right tools. For this, Kintzer and his team travel to Africa to educate cacao plantations about what it is they harvest.

We were not simply visiting TCHO’s factory. In fact, the factory tour did not even happen as planned, because we DSC03330all worked with great enthusiasm and did not want to interrupt our flow of ideas. It is possible to be creative on a Saturday morning!

The task: be part of the first ever “Chocolate Hackathon.” The idea was to design an innovative product for TCHO. In small teams of four to five people, we had two and a half hours to come up with an idea and present it to a jury in a pitch.

Our group worked on thDSC03337e idea that one can travel the world by eating TCHO Chocolates. One bite of out of our little suitcase should transport the customer right to where this chocolate is from. The origin of the chocolate and a special flavor representing the region are showcased in each of our flavors. With this idea, we made it to second place!

Mind you, the first place team came up with the idea to combine tea and chocolate, which has both a local appeal and can be used all year round. Chapeau, and congratulations again! Of course this was not just fun and games but a serious jury of 16 experts from various backgrounds served as mentors during the working process and finally as a jury judging our pitches. Overall, it was an amazing experience. If you do not believe that working early on a Saturday morning can be fun, you should try one of these events for yourself.

*This blogpost was written by Julia Ort. All photos are courtesy of Julia Ort*

Berkeley-Haas Student Gift Campaign

The Student Gift Campaign is our chance to say thank you to all that Haas has given us and will continue to give us through benefits when we become alumni.  Each of us has benefited from the Haas Fund as students in various ways—mock interviews, career conferences, world class professors, designated career counselor at the Cal Career Center. All of these student benefits were powered by the Haas Fund. With this week being the last week of the Student Gift Campaign, we only need 55 more donors to reach our goal of 250 total donors.

Experts from current students enrolled in the Haas Undergraduate Program:

“I’m originally from Huntington Beach, CA and struggled to find my passion and drive for higher education after I dropped out of college following high school. After joining the military, I learned valuable skills to realign my path. Although the military was not for me, I found new appreciation for higher education and immediately began attending community college at Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, CA. With the help of my family, peers, and the tremendous faculty at OCC, I was able to gain acceptance to my dream school – Berkeley-Haas. At 27, I’m often older than many students in my classes, but my drive to succeed is just as strong. I love Marketing Analytics, and have been working with Gazillion Entertainment, a game company in Foster City, for the past year. I will continue full-time employment with them upon graduation in May.

My donation is my gift to help give back to those who have helped me in my time at Haas. The support I’ve received along my journey has been unparalleled, and I owe my success at each step of the way to those who spent time, effort, and resources to give me a chance to learn and grow. I look forward to giving back via the Alumni network. Go Bears!” – Christian Holmlund (BS ’15)

“I can start by telling you why I gave. I’m deeply involved and passionate about the cause of public education. As a product of K-12 and college public schools, I’ve loved having the opportunity to have a world class education at a fraction of the cost of private schools. From the professors to the classes, Berkeley-Haas has instilled a love for challenges and collaboration in my life. I gave to Haas because I want future students to experience the benefits that I’ve gotten at Cal!” – Subhashree Rengarajan (BS ’15)

“I chose to contribute to the Student Gift Campaign at the leadership level because I wanted to show Haas how much I’ve appreciated the opportunity to receive an incredible education here.  I have benefited immensely from receiving a Haas education and feel privileged to soon be a part of an incredible network of alumnae.” – Stacey Patten (BS ’15)

“I chose to give to the Student Gift Campaign because without BerkeleyHaas resources, advisors, guidance, faculty, and staff, my ability to succeed academically, professionally, and socially would be more limited. Giving to the Student Gift Campaign allowed me to invest in the future of BerkeleyHaas, as previous students did for me.” – Ryan Khalessi (BS ’15)

“I chose to donate to the Student Gift Campaign because I’m incredibly grateful to study at the Haas School of Business. Here at Haas, I’ve found my community through my classes, the Cohort Program and the Haas Business School Association. Above all, I’m receiving a world-class education. I know that these opportunities would not have been available to me without the generous contributions of donors. I donated to ensure that other students will benefit from these resources and opportunities for years to come.” – Jessica Mersten (BS ’16)

“I am lucky enough to call myself a student at the renowned UC Berkeley, Haas School of Business. To have everything we need to excel in the job recruitment process is a god-send. I am forever thankful for The Haas School of Business for its amazing facility, opportunities, and alumni network. I chose to give to the Student Gift Campaign to show my appreciation for all that we have here. Not only am I investing in my future at Berkeley-Haas but the amazing students to come. For I am lucky to have a private school like education with a public school tuition, Thank you Walter A. Haas School of Business.” – Isabelle Lee (BS ’16)

Since this is the last week to give back, I urge everyone to give back to Berkeley –Haas. Please join me and the 195 other Haas students and give back.

3rd Annual Innovate@Berkeley: Presented by Alpha Epsilon Zeta

On April 22nd, 2015, Alpha Epsilon Zeta (AEZ) hosted its 3rd Annual Innovate@Berkeley Startup Expo at Hotel Shattuck, in the heart of bustling downtown Berkeley. Three years ago, Innovate was started by AEZ alumnus Sameen Karim, with the goal of showcasing all the entrepreneurial talent that the city of Berkeley has to offer. With each iteration of Innovate, AEZ has sought to take the event to the next level and put on an even higher quality experience, especially in terms of the startups and speakers in attendance.

2UntitledAEZ is a multidisciplinary professional fraternity, whose brothers’ majors span several different disciplines. Core ideals are professionalism, brotherhood, and unity. Founded in 2003, AEZ has grown substantially, with more than 100 active and alumni members; AEZ prides itself in their close knit alumni network. As an organization, AEZ works to bring a business focus to all disciplines and strives to stay engaged with the professional world through an annual PRF, where industry speakers are invited to speak as part of a panel. Innovate has become one of AEZ’s trademark events, and seems to have resonated with the Berkeley entrepreneurial community.

UntitledOne of the most encouraging aspects of Innovate this year was the diversity of the crowd drawn in. The hundreds of attendees that came out were represented by a healthy balance of industry professionals and students. Even the students themselves were a diverse collection of individuals, with majors ranging from business and economics to political science and anthropology. The crowd ultimately reflected the outcome of one of the major objectives for the event: to be able to unite the broader Berkeley community on the basis of their interest in entrepreneurship and innovation.

Innovate began as a startup fair, with each of the 28 participating startup companies showcasing their products and ideas in individual booths. Upon entry, every attendee received three tickets to vote for their three favorite startups participating in the fair. The company with the most votes would earn the People’s Choice Award. While the attendees floated around the room, a panel of judges listened to and evaluated the pitches of the ten startups that were selected for the pitch competition.

As the startup fair wrapped up, Innovate transitioned into a panel discussion, titled “Lessons from the Top: Building Products for the Masses.” Moderated by AEZ alum Arjun Arora (Co-Founder of Immediately and Founder of Retargeter), the discussion revolved around the notion of scalability in a business. The speaker panel consisted of of Jack McCauley (Founder of Oculus VR), Sumaya Kazi (Founder and CEO of Sumazi) and Jed Katz (Partner at Javelin Venture Partners). Through their experiences starting companies and seeing them grow, each of these speakers provided tremendous insight to how scalability in a business can be achieved, tying their ideas to their personal experiences.

3UntitledThe event finally concluded with an awards ceremony, where the three winners from the pitch competition were honored. Transcense, a company that’s developed a mobile application that transcribes conversations as they happen in real-time, took home the top prize, while Via Analytics, who hope to revolutionize the public transit system, came second. Rounding out the top three was Kudo3D, a startup that produces 3D printers. The winners of the People’s Choice Award to universal acclaim was Chai Guys, a startup founded by Berkeley students Rohan Agarwal and Anand Lakshminarayan that produces authentic Indian chai.

Innovate gave AEZ the incredible opportunity of interfacing with a number of industry professionals and the unique chance to learn more about the entrepreneurial subculture. Such a massive event required tremendous planning and foresight, but having orchestrated the event before, we felt well-equipped to handle the challenges that inevitably arose. For our organization, hosting Innovate was a special experience and we were thrilled to be able to hold such an event for the UC Berkeley and Haas community.

You can view photos from the event here and find out more information about Alpha Epsilon Zeta on their website.

Berkeley-Haas Women’s Empowerment Day

The 3rd annual Women’s Empowerment Day (WED) took place on Friday, April 10th 2015. WED was hosted by the Undergraduate Program to bring together over 100 undergraduate women that were nominated by professors and staff. This half-day conference was held to inspire, orient and empower women who will soon graduate from the Berkeley-Haas undergraduate program.

Unlike most conferences, WED had a very intimate setting that allowed for 45-minute round-table discussions in small groups. We had the chance to speak with over 10 alums to gain insight about work life balance, how to find meaning on the job, and tips for climbing the corporate ladder. It was a time to ask those questions about what it means to be a successful, powerful woman in business. Speakers included Haas Professors Krystal Thomas, who initiated the conference three years ago and Kellie McElheney, who talked about being a lioness, as well as, Assistant Dean Erika Walker and Dean Lyons.


Cynt and I

Among those alumna was Cynt Marshall, Senior Vice President at AT&T. Cynt, the keynote speaker, was truly inspiring and empowering. By the end of the day, everyone had adopted her catchy, new phrase- HASU– or Hook A Sister Up! Cynt also shared 10 lessons to being a powerful in the business world and making an impact.

10 Lessons to Success in Business… and Life

Always remember where you came from, or you might…

If we forget where we came from or how we got where we are, we may easily lose sight of where we are going and end up back where we started.

Do the right thing

As you venture out, you may be asked to do certain things outside your comfort zone, but never compromise your integrity. Always remember that there’s a difference between “doing things right” and “doing the right thing.” Make sure that is very clear to you now before you starting doing.

Show up

In order to win, you must be present! You need to stand up and be heard. You must DO YOU!

Sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel is a train

Bad stuff happens to good people. That’s just part of life. Also know that tough times don’t last, but tough people do.

Respond gracefully when bad stuff happens

People don’t remember what happened or how it happened, but they will remember how you responded to what happened. So take a moment, take a deep breath, and then respond.

People matter… that’s all that matters

No man is an island; we all need each other, so stop acting like we don’t. Realize that people don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.

Embrace you sisters… we’re all we have

One of nicest things we can do is stick together as sisters and look out for one another. Look for the HASU moment and always Hook A Sister Up.

Protect what’s important to you

Know what is really important to you and keep it close to you.

Get MAD- Make A Difference

Life is much more meaningful when leave an impact and are making a difference. Find a cause that makes you mad enough to take action to make it better. Then DO IT!

Find your passion and purpose, cry and get busy

We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. Find you passion and purpose in life and pursue it. If you find what you truly love, it will never feel like work.

WED was a truly memorable event, so special thanks to Dresden John and the Undergraduate Program for organizing it.

Currently Recruiting: The Haas Undergraduate Blog (2015-2016)

The Haas Undergraduate Blog

The Haas Undergraduate Blog is a platform dedicated to providing an “insider perspective” into life as a student at Haas. It aims to serve as a valuable resource for Haas alumni, as well as current, non-major, incoming, and prospective Haas undergraduates, who are interested in learning about the culture and current happenings in the prestigious business program.

Great news! The Haas Blog is currently recruiting for new members to join our team! Bloggers do not have to be experienced, but should enjoy writing short blog posts about Haas-related topics that they feel enthusiastic about. Authors have freedom and flexibility to choose whatever subjects to write about as long as they commit to publishing 1-2 articles per month.

If you have any questions or are interested in joining our team, please direct questions to See application instructions below.**

Applications will be due by April 24th and interviews will be conducted April 25th.

Thank you!


** Haas Undergraduate Blogger Application Instructions

Please e-mail all requested information to the Haas Undergrad Blog Team at with subject title “Haas Undergraduate Blogger Application” no later than April 24, 2015.

Haas Undergraduate Blogger Application Checklist

  • Resume
  • Cover Letter (mention blog experience(s) & affiliated student orgs)
  • First Blog Post – one paragraph describing your intended blog post
  • WordPress Username & Accompanying E-mail
  • Follow @BerkeleyHaasUG & @BerkeleyHaas on Twitter
  • Like our Facebook page at BerkeleyHaasUndergrad
  • If selected, short interviews will be conducted on April 25th with Time TBA

 Haas Undergraduate Blogger Requirements

  • This is a long-term commitment (two consecutive semesters)
  • Writers are expected to post 1-2 article per month
  • This is an unpaid position
  • Haas Undergraduate Program reserves the right to modify posts and blog contributions if appropriate