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June 24, 2012

From classmates to friendships

Today is my birthday. I plan to spend most of the day in Cambridge with Janine and the kids and some friends before driving back to London. This weekend has been about Janine's 5 year reunion at Judge Business School where she studied her MBA. Reflecting on that year I'm reminded that the friends we'll see again today were simply new names and faces back then.

At the 2002 & 2007 Reunion Gala Dinner last night it was mentioned that these get togethers are not about finding out who gets paid the most and who's running what. They're merely for catching up amongst friends, mentors and peers. In my case, my wife was the class member but I have had so much interaction with her class during that year and beyond that I have solid friendships as a result of it. Some of those friends have become very influential in business and others have launched growing start-ups. To many in the world, they may be desired business contacts but to me they are just friends. That surprises me sometimes, especially when I think of the international weddings, births and birthdays we have celebrated as a result of that year.

With my Warwick MBA kicking off in exactly one week's time, I'm looking to the future in anticipation. Although the programme structure I signed up for is online and through distance learning, we have already had a lot of interaction within the class through twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. I get the feeling that our international group will not feel as distant from each other as we are geographically. Already I can see lots of excitement about our face-to-face week later this year where we'll get to meet everyone. Each semester will seem like a reunion and I'm sure we'll grow closer and look forward to each one a little bit more. I am looking forward to that. With 2,5 years to interact with, learn from and share with my class I can only see a much closer international group forming over the years and look forward to the point where we've become friends while nobody has noticed. That would mean it was effortless and was meant to be.

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