What is it? Bridge Eat is an app founded by two students, for other students who want to network with, or simply get to know others in their area. The setting is usually a home-cooked meal at a hosts house.
Why its such a brilliant idea: Often when students start university there are a whole host of activities for you to get involved in, however they predominantly revolve around a type of sport or the degree you are studying. Bridge Eat is a fantastic way to meet people with very different interests and studying a whole host of other subjects. The fact that its an intimate dinner party also makes it a great way to network and truly get to know someone, as opposed to only ever getting drunk together at the union on a Friday night!
Themes: The theme of the night, whether it’s entrepreneurship, science, philosophy or simply making friends, is decided by the host who will then select from a waiting list of interested guests
My Experience: Before the app launched, I was invited by one of the founders – Elsa Bensaid, to come and try out this great new concept at her house on Chiltern Street. A Facebook group was created so that we could all see the menu plan, invited guests and give a short introduction to ourselves if we so wished, or flag up any dietary requirements.
A paypal payment of roughly 9-10 pounds per head was transferred beforehand, this price is again set by the host, usually depending on what they are cooking and how many people are attending. The homemade meal was delicious and consisted of watermelon and mozzarella salad for starters, macaroni cheese and nuts with sautéed mushrooms and broccoli for mains and then marshmallow fruit skewers for dessert. This was all washed down with some wine and fruity cocktails.
Attendees: The aim of the night was simply to discuss the concept, get to know each-other brainstorm new ideas and feedback any improvements that could be made. Guests included Imperial students such as myself, the two founders Elsa and Divya Rajendran, a Russian Business school student, an American student from UCL (who had only relocated recently) and a student originally from Paris. One of the best things about university is the diversity, so it was fantastic to be able to connect with people from all across the globe in such a setting.
We arrived at around 8pm and around 2 and a half hours later we had all made some great new connections both on and off campus, had a really stimulating conversation and chosen to keep in touch via Facebook. I really look forward to seeing how the app grows and develops and witnessing the interesting new concepts that arise further down the line. However as it is, I think it truly is a fantastic idea and I would absolutely attend another similar event in future.
If you feel shy about attending, having just started a new college or relocated, then you needn’t worry as everyone is incredibly friendly and goes with the intention of being as open as possible. Although most people apply for single spaces you could also apply with a friend if you didn’t want to go alone. If you are interested then give it a go! Check out their website at bridgeeat.com and download the app or give their Facebook page a like here.