Happy New Year, Alumni and Friends!

I think we can agree that 2020 was a year we were all too glad to see behind us. But, as is the case year in and year out, our Whitman alumni and friends were front and center answering our calls for help…and there were many! From placing students and recent graduates in internships and full-time positions amid significant economic uncertainty to providing professional perspectives, mentorship and financial support, the Orange family came through time and time again. We are truly grateful!

It strikes me that almost every time alumni agree to help with our requests for one thing or another, they preface the “yes” by offering a story of how an alum helped them in some meaningful way when they were students. I am confident that the current students and recent graduates who benefitted from alumni giving back during the pandemic will, too, pay it forward one day when given the chance. That is one of the constants we can count on at Whitman. That is how the circle grows.

As we ready for yet another semester impacted by the ongoing pandemic, we will most certainly need our alumni and friends to help us clear the hurdles posed by COVID-19. If you would like to engage or re-engage by mentoring, helping with placement, sharing your professional perspectives, making a financial gift or in some other way, please reach out (ahkessle@syr.edu) and we’ll make a plan. Though these times are extraordinary, our students are smart, gritty and resilient. The village that alumni and friends have helped build, and continue to fortify, provides support for their success in times of opportunity and adversity.

To be part of that village, we have to be able to find you…not only to ask for help but to also invite you to events (both virtual and in-person when it’s safe again) and to share the latest news and resources available to you. So please be sure to keep your email and mailing addresses up to date on your alumni record. We’d really like to know where you’re working and your title, too. That helps when we have particular needs for student engagement. You can do that at alumniupdate.syr.edu.

I also encourage you to visit cusecommunity.syr.edu. It’s a wonderful resource for SU alumni. There you can search for an alumni club in your area, view event listings, learn about career resources and more. Our Whitman LinkedIn group and page are also great sources for news and networking.

I look forward to keeping in touch in 2021, and I hope to see many of you—be it in person or on screen. May the new year be one of good health, happiness and resolutions realized. Take care!


Alison Kessler, Director of Alumni Engagement