Throughout the school year, a number of new groups have formed in the Tabor Academy community as a result of the brainstorming done at the second annual Leadership Symposium. The theme of that day was to think of new positions or programs that could enhance certain areas of life at Tabor. One group focused on alumni relations and, as a result, the Student Alumni Connection Board (SACB) was recently formed.
Sara Yeransian, an officer in the advancement office, leads the 11 students on the board. “The overall purpose of the group is to better connect current students with the alumni base,” says Yeransian.
In order to achieve this purpose, the group plans to implement a number of activities and events. For example, next year the board will focus on organizing an alumni speaker series during which graduates will come to Tabor and speak about something that interests current students, who will recommend the discussion topics.
According to senior board member Ellie Sullivan, “We’re planning some events in the spring to get alums back on campus.” These events will be beneficial because, although many graduates in the Boston area would like to return, Sullivan points out, “There aren’t very many opportunities for them to do so.”
These events include a lunch in which young alumni can sit at different tables to discuss schools, sports, music, and other post-graduation endeavors.
Additionally, the board is planning an alumni weekend during which alums can attend sports competitions as well as participate in other activities and meals with students.
Currently, many off-campus events exist for alumni and the group is hoping to bring students to these gatherings to improve the connection. For example, at a recent reception where John Fish ‘78 spoke about his effort to bring the Olympics to Boston, three Tabor seniors were able to attend, listen and talk to alums.
Julia Furneaux, a board member, recognizes that “Tabor does have an alumni newsletter to update them on life at Tabor”; however, she says, “We are just now getting ideas on how to connect student to the alumni on a more personal level.”
Technology and social media are crucial in forming these connections. According to Yeransian, Matt Paliotta, a board member, “just created a group on the Tabor Alumni LinkedIn page that will serve as a method of communication between students and alumni.” Students who choose to utilize this link will hopefully find it helpful for forming relationships with alumni and finding access to summer internships and more.
An improved connection between alumni and students will be beneficial to both parties. According to Sullivan, with a medium of social media, “Students can go to find alums who may have jobs or internships open and want to hire a Tabor student, or for juniors and seniors who want to hear from a former Tabor student about a certain school they attended.” For the alumni, this is equally beneficial as they would be able to seek out students for said internships.
Additionally, a new campaign titled “How did you seas the day?” inspired by Tabor’s waterfront location, has been started by the board. This is a series of videos published on Instagram in which a few students and faculty are featured weekly stating how they seized the day at Tabor. This again will be an accessible way for alumni to stay involved in current Tabor life.
Although the SACB has only been in action for a few months, improvements in connections between alumni and current students have been made. Isabelle Rodgers is passionate about her involvement in the board, “I know that I will always want to be connected back to Tabor and having this board set up will allow me to feel like I never really left after I graduated and that I still have a connection to the school.”
By Julia O’Rourke