Tell me a little about yourself.
My name is Kirushanth Ravindran and I am currently a junior majoring in Economics and I am serving as the Fall 2014 President of Ascend – Berkeley Student Chapter. Outside of Ascend, I am involved in AFX Dance, Klesis and work as a Residential Computing Consultant with Student Affairs – Information Technology. I table on Sproul Plaza from Tuesday 1-2PM, so come by and talk to me to learn more about Ascend!
What is the goal of Ascend?
Ascend strives to inspire students to reach their leadership potential through a community of mentors, colleagues, and friends. Through opportunities to push one’s self outside their own comfort zone, members gain valuable experience that is not only valuable, but also practical. Ascend members grow through event planning, weekly professional training, informational presentations, and professional workshops to gain a well-rounded base to jump-start their professional careers.
What do you like most about being part of Ascend?
What I found when I first joined Ascend was a family-like atmosphere of people who genuinely cared about each other. One of the key aspects that distinguish Ascend is the high focus on personal mentorship. New members are inspired and mentored by experienced chairs who guide and help younger members learn about the different career opportunities, help them through recruiting opportunities, and developing their professional and leadership growth. I would not be where I am today without the guidance and advice that I gained while I was an immature freshman; but now to a leader of an organization on a large campus such as UC Berkeley’s.
Tell me a little about the club and some recent events.
Ascend has six committees with 3 on the professional side and 3 on the community side to balance professionalism with community in the organization. This semester, the Finance Committee hosted the signature Leaders Global Network Workshop with 200 plus in attendance. The 2-day workshop is led by former investment banker Sherjan Husanie, who has previously worked at RBC, Houlihan Lokey, Morgan Stanley; he is now at Google Capital. The workshop is designed to help young professionals gain insight and learn skills to break into the competitive fields of Investment Banking, Consulting, and Accounting. This provided the attendees, coming from Berkeley, UCSF, UC Davis, Cal Poly, and many other schools the necessary skills and knowledge to go into their next interview with confidence and ability to nail that interview.
Attendees at the end of the workshop are then invited to apply to the Leaders Global Network with about 10-20 attendees being invited to join the network. This exclusive network is designed to provide members a network of high achieving students and professionals to seek inspiration and connections at the top firms across the globe.
How is Ascend different from other clubs?
Similar to Leaders Global Network, Ascend prides itself in its high-potential, talented and motivated member base as it is one of the core reasons why the organization has seen an amazing amount of success in the alumni of the organization. One of the key factors to our success as well as our retention rate of our members is the incredible amount of development that the committee members go through in just one semester. I personally saw growth in myself with the ability to lead my own events, be comfortable asking any questions despite how basic they were, as well as having many alumni members to look up to and aspire to reach the same successes that they have had. Ascend provides the perfect chemistry of professionalism, mentorship and community to build the foundation for a future of limitless success and life-long friendships.