Category: News & Information
Cutting through the Mystery of the UDAA Board of Directors
Q&A with UDAA President Linda Myrick, EG77
Ever wonder what serving on the UD Alumni Association Board of Directors is like? Here, UDAA President Linda Justice Myrick, EG77, answers some common questions about the work of the UDAA Board of Directors to provide insight and cut through any mysteries surrounding the volunteer opportunity.
First, how and why did you get involved with the UD Alumni Association Board of Directors?
It was never a question that I ever asked myself? It just evolved! I first engaged with the UDAA through the College of Engineering Alumni Association. I participated on the Scholarship Committee, reviewing applications for financial support for students and student groups. I felt that I was helping to connect students with unique learning experiences beyond the classroom and offer opportunities that students may not be able to afford if it were not for the funds from the UDAA. My participation evolved to include participation on the College of Engineering Advisory Council, the Biomedical Advisory Council, and even the Master Players Concert Series Advisory. Along the way, the UDAA created a network of friends who have a shared passion for all things Blue Hens!
What is the time commitment like?
Board members are expected to attend four full board meetings annually and every volunteer serves on one committee, where much of the work is done. A silver lining of the pandemic has been the convenience of virtual meetings. In addition to board meetings, volunteers are often asked to attend UDAA events and other UD programs throughout the year. Each year, six new board members start four-year terms and additional volunteers are often brought on to serve as members at large, a one-year term which can allow someone to test the waters before making a more long-term commitment.
What is the relationship between the UDAA and UD?
The UDAA is a separately incorporated 501c3 from the University, which means it does not receive funding from the UD for its programs or operations. The UDAA partners with the Office of Development and Alumni Relations to fulfill its vision and mission, and to execute its strategies, programs and outreach. Both groups have the same end goal—to ensure that all current and future alumni have a fulfilling, lifelong relationship with our great University.
What do you look for when recruiting new board members?
We take a few factors into consideration such as alumni who bleed Blue and Gold, are role models for other alumni and give of their time, talent, and treasure. Blue Hens who are already involved or engaged with UD in some capacity stand out—whether that’s through attending events, volunteering with UD in some way, such as serving as a mentor to students and alumni, or even being a strong ambassador for the University on social media or within social circles. We also look for alumni who demonstrate their support for UD through annual gifts at any level.
What are the benefits of being a board member?
First and foremost, as I said earlier, the Board is a collaborative network of individuals who share a passion for the University and all things Blue Hens! We really enjoy the opportunity to contribute and give back to the University. It surprises me that, after 40 years since graduation, I have such a tremendous feeling of pride for the University. One of the greatest thrills was being involved in the UDAA’s commissioning of Alumni Circle. The Circle was funded by the UDAA and recognizes the recipients of the Alumni Wall of Fame, Outstanding Alumni Award, Warner and Taylor Awards, and past UDAA Presidents.
It is also an honor to be able to speak with the UD administrators as a voice for the 192,000 global alumni and to receive exclusive tours of new spaces on campus and VIP access to some University events.
The UDAA looks forward to welcoming new alumni to serve as volunteers on the Board of Directors beginning July 1, 2021. You may nominate yourself here.
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