Close Mobile Menu

Kai Mai ’01 Bridges the Gap Between Students and Alumni

May 17, 2021

Quick facts about Kai Mai

Degrees: BS, electrical engineering and computer science; MS, software engineering, Carnegie Mellon University

Currently: COO, Petoi; founder, Cal Startup network; co-president, Berkeley Chinese Alumni International Association Silicon Valley Chapter

What was your life like at Cal?

I was a transfer student from the City College of San Francisco. Coming to Berkeley was a huge shock for me, and everyone seemed smarter than me. I remember that my introductory computer science classes had a few hundred students. I spent a lot of time in Cory Hall and Soda Hall and pulled a few all-nighters. Looking back, I wish I had engaged with other aspects of campus life more.

What are you working on currently?

I am working at Petoi to bring affordable, futuristic robot pets from fiction to reality. I built the Cal Startup Network to help connect Cal alumni with students so they can collaborate to build the next generation of startups and make positive changes around the world. It will leverage Slack user groups and email lists, and we will host virtual events for alumni to share their entrepreneurship stories.

How do you tap into your Cal alumni network?

A few years ago, I recruited prominent Cal alumni to set up the China Leadership Award Scholarship. Additionally, as a committee member of the Berkeley Club of Shanghai, I helped organize Berkeley 150 in Shanghai events and the 2018 Pac-12 China Game.


The Berkeley Club of Shanghai’s mission is to help members of the Berkeley community in Shanghai stay connected to the university and each other.

For more information, follow the Berkeley Club of Shanghai on Facebook.

Related Articles


Wrapping Up: More Summer 2021 Welcome Parties to Greet New Cal Students

As this summer comes to its close, so do Summer Welcome Parties. Summer Welcome Parties are the Cal Alumni Association’s traditional signature summer event for alumni across the country to welcome incoming first-year and transfer students to the UC Berkeley community. 

Alumni-Student Mixer at Golden Bear Orientation. | Image by Amy Bartel | Cal Alumni Association

Alumni Share Paths from Cal to Career with Incoming Transfers

The Cal Alumni Association (CAA) thanks all the alumni and professionals that attended this year’s Alumni-Student Mixer at Golden Bear Orientation. Approximately 150 alumni from a variety of industries and backgrounds welcomed new transfer students to Cal on Memorial Glade. Because of these volunteers, nearly 1,000 students received a warm welcome to campus, and were ready to start their first semester at UC Berkeley with clarity about the paths alumni took to get where they are now.

Alumni Chapters

Offer: Accepted? Alumni Encourage Students to Choose Cal at Virtual “Yield” Events

At the close of Alumni Week, newly admitted students from all over the country came together virtually through chapter-led Yield events. During Yield, the Berkeley community engages with newly admitted students and helps them feel welcome at Cal so that they can feel confident in choosing UC Berkeley. Students participate in lectures and panels and attend department-led information sessions.