Queen's University

It’s all about community: QUAA President's message

As QUAA President Heather Black sees it, there’s a lot more to the Queen’s experience than just a quality education – the sense of community, for one thing.

As I embark upon my second year as President of the Queen’s University Alumni Association (QUAA) and my sixth year on the QUAA Board, I remain proud of my alma mater, and I have many fond memories of my time on campus.

While I was at Queen’s, it was my world – a microcosm of the “real” world. The realization that life has both happy and sad events and that it is not always easy or fair can be difficult to accept. I experienced the challenging coming-of-age process within the strong and supportive Queen’s community. I wouldn’t have wanted to do it anywhere else. I believe our students on campus today know that they, too, are part of this strong and supportive community.

My ties to the Queen’s community have played an important in my life. In the early days after graduation, I was surrounded in Toronto by my friends from school. We continued to hang out together. We joined gyms, went to ball games, and entertained each other in our first “adult homes”.

As I got older, other Queen’s alumni I met at work or through friends became friends, too. One of those friends, as I have written about before, encouraged me to join the QUAA Board. Another became my boss. A few have gone on road trips with me. All have continued to enrich my life in so many ways

Being active on the QUAA Board, I have enlarged my circle to include current students, some Queen’s parents, recent grads, professors, other staff members, and, of course, fellow Board members. I continue to be challenged and supported by my Queen’s community, and I feel privileged to count many fellow Queen’s grads among my closest friends.

Extending and strengthening a broader Queen’s community remains one of the QUAA’s key objectives. In that spirit, the Board has refreshed its theme for the year to Connecting 2.0 – another kick at the same can, some might say, or an encouragement to alumni to interact, comment, and collaborate (in the spirit of Web 2.0!). We intend to reach out in a few different ways as we strive to enhance and make more meaningful the alumni connection to the University and campus events.

Please let us know how we are doing as we extend our Alumni Card distribution, continue our Thank-You Calling Campaign, hold our second Summerhill Society reception, and enhance our web pages.

I encourage you to consider joining us in Kingston next fall, to take the opportunity to reconnect with fellow alumni wherever and whenever possible, and to celebrate the contributions the Queen’s community continues to make to Canada and in the world.

There’s one especially important alumni event that I would like to mention here. Our annual Alumni Assembly, was held on the weekend of October 22-23. Alumni gathered on campus to connect, teach, network, explore, learn, and celebrate their involvement with the QUAA and with their alma mater. We also discussed ways to further develop and sustain our Branch network, viewed presentations on various campus activities and enjoyed our annual breakfast with the Principal, which is always informative and well-attended.

Our Gala Awards event, a celebration of the Queen’s community, was held on the Saturday night. Some of our most distinguished alumni were honored. For the names of our award winners, please see the advertisment on page 32 of the latest edition of the Review.

I encourage you to consider joining us in Kingston next fall, to take the opportunity to reconnect with fellow alumni wherever and whenever possible, and to celebrate the contributions the Queen’s community continues to make to Canada and in the world.

I’m proud to be a Queen’s grad and to be part of the Queen’s community, and I hope you are, too. I look forward to seeing and meeting you at a Queen’s event in the coming months or to hearing from you. I always welcome the opportunity to speak with alumni at the Queen’s and QUAA events that I attend, and I enjoy receiving emails at QUAA.President@queensu.ca. Cha Gheill!

Queen's Alumni Review, 2010 Issue #4Queen's Alumni Review
2010 Issue #4
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