MBA students, professors, and alumni left their briefcases at the office and grabbed their golf bags for the eighth annual MBA Golf Tournament on May 2.

“As a brand new MBA student, it was fun to meet alums who are still connected to the school and hear about their experiences,” said Jim Sumner, GB’19. “It was a great way to meet people from different companies around the Richmond area.”

The tournament brings together alumni, students, faculty, staff, and business leaders in the Richmond community to network and create professional connections in a fun and casual environment.

“The golf tournament is a great time for current MBA students to engage with alumni,” said Debbie Fisher, associate director of The Richmond MBA. “It’s an opportunity for all of us to have fun in a beautiful setting. It creates collegiality, camaraderie, and helps build our community.”

More than 70 students, faculty, staff, and alumni attended the golf tournament this year. As an alternative to the tournament, some people took part in an hour-long golf clinic, followed by a wine tasting featuring local brands such as Robins Cellars, Roanoke Valley Wine Co., and Free Run Wine.

Many alumni attended the event, including John Randolph, GB’14, who donated goodie bags for everyone to take home. He says without events like the MBA golf tournament, he wouldn’t have been able to attend graduate school.

“The golf tournament is important because it is one of two major events that supports our MBA Scholarship Fund,” Randolph said. “My family and I benefitted a great deal from the Scholarship Fund and I owe it to the University to give back and help grow the Fund.”

He nearly declined attending the MBA program all together because of his financial situation as a father of three, with another child on the way, but, the Scholarship Fund allowed him to take half of his classes for free.

“I feel like I need to keep giving back to help the program continue to bring in the most talented people regardless of financial situation and help talented applicants’ dreams come true,” Randolph said.

All proceeds from the golf tournament go toward The Richmond MBA Scholarship Fund, allowing for students like Randolph to attend the program without fear of financial burden. Plus, the experience helps encourage students and faculty to get to know one another outside of the classroom.

“A little bit of competition is always fun,” Fisher said. “The tournament teaches the students the soft skills of professionalism that they will need in the business world. Golf is just one way to get to know clients, network and build professional relationships.”

Fisher hopes to continue the tradition of The Richmond MBA Golf Tournament next year. Find out more information about The Richmond MBA Scholarship Fund by contacting the graduate program’s director, Randy Raggio.