Message from the Alumni Association President
Morgan Rees ’61 became the 62nd president of the Alumni Association during Reunion weekend last June. He and his wife, Janet, reside in Florida and Ohio. An active alumnus, Mo Rees has served as a member of his Class Board of Directors and the President’s Advisory Council, as chair of his 40th Reunion Class Gift Committee, and as a Reunion volunteer. He shares his thoughts as Association president:
What are your goals for the coming year?
Volunteerism or increasing alumni involvement with WPI is one of our two principal objectives. During recent meetings of the Class Boards of Directors meeting and the Alumni Leadership Council, we discussed different ways to increase alumni involvement. A critical part of this effort is reestablishing an extensive Regional Club Program. Under the leadership of Joe Ferrantino ’67 and Roger Lavallee ’73, the Hartford-Springfield Club is up and running, and groundwork for other clubs is under way in New York, Washington, and southern New Hampshire. We hope to add several clubs each year. Other volunteer opportunities include participating in class activities and GOLD (Graduates of the Last Decade) events, or becoming an Alumni Ambassador to represent WPI at a high school or college fair. In the coming months, the Alumni Association Cabinet will publish a list of other specific volunteer opportunities.
Tell me about the Regional Club program.
Over the past few years, regional events have been sponsored in the Boston area, Cape Cod, Hartford, Providence, New York City, Washington, D.C., California, and Florida. Events have focused on discussions with WPI faculty, theater outings, and sporting activities. In connection with revitalizing the Hartford-Springfield club, Joe and Roger and their committee created a template for how to launch a Regional Club. Efforts will focus on four regional clubs in 2006 to allow us to refine the operating model. Anyone looking to help with these activities should contact the Alumni Office. We welcome your ideas on events and target cities.
What’s your second principal objective?
Career development, support, and mentoring is an important initiative launched by the Alumni Association within the last two years. Led by Bill Krein ’62, we are working to strengthen this program, which links alumni seeking new employment with alumni who have employment opportunities. It also matches those making a career change with other alums who can provide career mentoring on a confidential, one-to-one basis. Job listings are now posted in The Bridge, the monthly alumni e-newsletter. The response to the Career Development Program has been extremely positive and we have opportunities for many more alumni to assist us with organization and implementation.
How can alumni keep up to date on Association events?
There are a number of ways. The Alumni Association Web site, alumni.wpi.edu, is the best single source of information on alumni activities. It contains information on events, reunions, class Web sites, the organization of the Alumni Association, and more. I encourage folks to bookmark the site and visit it often. The Bridge, the monthly alumni e-newsletter, provides an ongoing link to WPI for alumni and friends and helps to keep them informed about association activities as well as news and events on campus. New subscribers may sign up for The Bridge at wpi.edu/+bridge. Right now, fewer than 4,000 alumni receive this e-newsletter. I’d like to set a goal to increase that to 6,000 by the end of 2006. We also believe in continuous improvement and strive to provide relevant information to our alumni. We have posted a survey that seeks feedback on how we communicate. The survey covers The Bridge and other forms of electronic communication.
How will you define the success of your presidency?
We can define success by continuing the culture of service to WPI and to all alumni that has characterized the Alumni Association leadership for many years. In my relatively brief time as an Association officer, I have been impressed with the quality and quantity of effort and dedication to WPI by the Association officers, cabinet members, and other volunteers. As long as this culture continues, the Association will thrive. In recognition of this dedicated service, we will highlight the contributions of various cabinet members in forthcoming issues of The Bridge. We can also define success by achieving the principal goals I described earlier. I believe these two initiatives will go a long way toward providing valuable services to all alumni and continuing the legacy of excellence at WPI.
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Last modified: Apr 24, 2006, 12:48 EDT