Last year, you saw Raising the Bar for the first time. For the first time at a bar, you actually learned something you can
remember the next day write home about. Fifty lectures were given at fifty bars in one night. Yesterday was the second rendition. We interviewed one of the organizers, Yuli Luvish, to learn more about this nexus of our two favorite things—drinking and learning.
Bwog: What inspired the event? Why did you guys create it for the first time last year? What do you think is interesting/new/exciting about the model?
YL: Raising The Bar is a student initiative. We are all students privileged enough to attend some of the finest schools in NYC and the world, and we thought that others should be entitled to listen to a personal lecture by notable scholars. We wanted to bring quality content to people in person. Hosting it in bars makes it a less intimidating setting for a lecture and creates unexpected environments for discussion.
We are still planning on continuing with the original format. However, we feel that when supplying anything to the public, especially education, it should be exciting and innovative. For our ‘Knowledge Meets Beer’ theme, we collaborated with Time, Inc., and we wanted to bring not only talks but important discussions on pressing topics. The debates establish both sides of every issue, with professors giving an academic point of view, while industry leaders emphasize the existing market state and share their experience.
Bwog: Why do you think people responded so well last year?
YL: We believe that people responded well last year because people, especially in a city like NYC, want to learn. Raising The Bar’s events suits fast paced New Yorkers looking to enrich themselves in a casual manner. In addition, it was an impressive production—with 50 talks in 50 different bars in one night—as well as a fascinating new concept.
Bwog: What’s it like orchestrating it this year after having already experienced all the craziness last year? What did you learn from having done it last year?
YL: Every production has its own kind of craziness. We have definitely learned a lot from last year’s, as a team and as a company. However, it’s always hectic and exciting and all in all fun!
Bwog: What’s different about this year from last?
YL: This year we are a smaller team, however we still have the rest of the team helping out and making it easier. Also, on top of this NYC event happening tomorrow we have additional events we are currently working on in SF, Sydney, HK and more coming up.
Bwog: How do you expect turnout to differ from last year?
YL: For our April event, we had over 6,000 people in 50 venues. This event is taking place in 10 venues, so it will be fewer people overall. But over 50% of the tickets were sold out in the first few hours, and we are currently sold out on all our panels, so the expectations are accordingly.
Clever and inspired logo via Twitter