Highlights include master classes, Alumni Achievement Award, a career fair, parties and more.
The annual Hertie School Alumni Reunion brought together around 170 graduates of the Master of Public Policy and Master of International Affairs programmes in Berlin on 10-12 May for a weekend of networking and nostalgia. Former students came from 34 countries to attend the events.
The Class of 2009 celebrated its 10th anniversary, and also produced this year’s winner of the Alumni Achievement Award. Besa Shahini, Minister for Education, Sport and Youth in Albania, was honoured for her outstanding service and engagement for the common good. Ambassador Artur Kuko of Albania and Ambassador Beqë Cufaj of Kosovo attended the ceremony on Friday afternoon and Hertie School President Henrik Enderlein presented her with the award, kicking off a weekend of festivities.
“Besa’s career has been exceptional. It has spanned from civil society, to academia, to government. It has taken her from Kosovo, to Canada, to Germany, and now to Albania. It is exactly what we, at the Hertie School, are proud to see our graduates accomplish,” Enderlein said.
The award, established in 2015, honours graduates’ outstanding accomplishments in public policy or public management over the past year, demonstrating an innovative and dedicated commitment to the principles of good governance.
On Friday, alumni also participated in Master Classes offered by Hertie School faculty members. Professor of International and Cyber Security Anita Gohdes offered the class Cyber Security and Human Rights; Professor of Data Science and Public Policy Slava Jankin taught The Promise of Machine Learning for Public Policy; Dean of Graduate Programmes and Professor of European Politics Christine Reh offered the course In the Shadow of Contestation: Electing a New Parliament for Europe's Citizens, and Dean of Executive Education and Professor for Communication in Politics and Civil Society Andrea Römmele taught The Future of Democracy: A Scenario Workshop.
Workshops were also offered on Wednesday and Thursday in a special programme on the UN Sustainable Development Goals for a group of alumni working in the development sector, sponsored by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).
Friday's events ended with a traditional alumni dinner for the ten-year reunion class, the Master of Public Policy cohort of 2009. Around half the cohort came to the reunion.
On Saturday, there was an career and networking fair, including a panel in which members of the 2009 cohort shared their stories from a decade in the workforce as Hertie School graduates. The fair also included networking speed dating and thematic break-out sessions hosted by alumni from different sectors.
In the evening, the reunion-goers gathered for a party, followed (for at least a few directly!) by a brunch on Sunday with Managing Director Axel Baisch, where they bid each other "Auf Wiedersehen!"...until 2020.