Global Alumni Day with the theme ‘Whose Business is AI?’ took place on Friday 17 May and it was even bigger and better than before.
Keynote speaker, Ritesh Kotak (MBA 2017), technology and cybersecurity analyst and lawyer
Keynote speaker, Ritesh Kotak (MBA 2017), technology and cybersecurity analyst and lawyer

With over 200 alumni and students registered to join us in person and a further 160 online, it was set to be the biggest yet! On the day, the auditorium and concourse were absolutely buzzing with so many alumni, current students and staff in attendance, with alumni joining us virtually from around the world.

Feedback collected on the day and since has been overwhelmingly positive, and it was fantastic to welcome so many back to the School. Comments include: ‘Excellent hospitality, inspiring networking, very welcoming, perfect setting’; ‘Engaging and thought-provoking sessions’; and ‘A great range of speakers and content designed to give lots of food for thought’.

The event was opened by Professor Gavin Jack, who joined the School as Dean on 1 May 2024. Alumni were really pleased to have the opportunity to meet with him so soon into his tenure.

He welcomed alumni and gave an update on School activities including an overview of the work going on to incorporate AI into the School’s teaching and research.

Brad Cotton (MBA 2019) then introduced the keynote speaker for the day, Ritesh Kotak (MBA 2017), technology and cybersecurity analyst, lawyer and media contributor, who joined us from Canada. Ritesh also took part in the MBA trek in London the day before.

Ritesh was followed by leadership expert and author Dr Eve Poole OBE (MBA 1998), another highly engaging speaker, who spoke about the concept of a robot soul and the importance of reflecting human agency, values and ‘junk code’ in developing advanced AI.

Guests raising glasses at Global Alumni Day 2024
Dr Eve Poole OBE, leadership expert and author

Following refreshments and networking on the concourse, the event continued with two panel events. The first was led by Professor Michael Rovatsos from the University’s School of Informatics, on the future of AI at work. He was joined by Viktoria Margit Ivan (MA(Hons) 2017), Senior Data Scientist at Unmind, and Azmat Hossain (MBA 2021) of Extend Robotics.

The second panel was led by Katy Guthrie from the University’s Bayes Centre who introduced three companies who graduated from their AI Accelerator programme. They were Kieron Smith (CTO, Snapdragon Monitoring), David Bowie (CEO, Eye to the Future) and Mathew Norbury (CEO, FC Laboratories).

Ritesh then concluded the day with insights from experts including Takara Small, a multimedia tech journalist joining us live from Canada, as well as speakers from earlier on the day: Professor Michael Rovatsos and Dr Eve Poole. All left us with much to contemplate in terms of how we can all best embrace the future of AI.

Dr Eve Poole OBE, leadership expert and author at the Global Alumni Day 2024
Global Alumni Day is an annual event bringing together alumni, staff and students

Missed the event?

If you missed the event and would like to watch the recordings, please contact the Alumni Team on with your full name, programme and graduation year.

View more photos from the event.

To read more about Global Alumni Day from the student perspective, read Bridging the student-alumni gap: Global Alumni Day 2024.