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Students Express Gratitude at Inaugural I <3 Alumni: Philanthropy Week

Monday, March 11, 2013

I Heart Alumni: Philanthropy Week

There’s no doubt about it: alumni and friends are the backbone of St. John’s. And during the University’s inaugural Philanthropy Week: I <3 Alumni – a new initiative featuring a week full of fun activities – students thanked St. John’s donors for their generous support.

“It came to our attention that there is an international Philanthropy Day in February,” said Brianne Murphy ’13C, President of the Student Alumni Association (SAA). “So, the SAA got together and came up with a number of unique ways that we could celebrate right here in Queens, designed to raise awareness around campus for all that our alumni contribute.”

Activities included: The Kick Off, in which members of the SAA handed out “Alumni Fun Facts” to other students; a bake sale raising funds for student scholarships; a Thank-You Booth, allowing students to write cards to alumni, showing their appreciation; and Storm Search, where SAA Representatives interviewed and videotaped fellow students, asking what “giving back” means to them.

“Everyone knows that our alumni help to fund the construction of certain facilities – after all, there are buildings on campus with names on them,” Murphy explained. “But, for example, I didn’t realize that my grant to study abroad was made possible by donors. I also didn’t realize that our alumni make possible countless internships and service opportunities – it’s truly remarkable. That’s why we were so proud of Philanthropy Week, because we made all this information much more obvious to students.”

As a longtime member of the SAA, Murphy interacts with alumni on a regular basis, representing the Office of Alumni Relations at various events and functions. Elisa Douglas ’05C, Assistant Director, Office of Alumni Relations, who serves as the Administrative Advisor to the SAA, noted the importance of the SAA and events like I <3 Alumni.

“Educating our students on the importance of our donors here at St. John’s is a big part of what we hope to do,” Douglas explained. “The SAA’s excitement and enthusiasm were contagious, and I think it’s safe to say now that everyone on campus is grateful for our alumni and friends.”