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Alumni Board reaches up, out, across, within

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Alumni Board Executive Committee 2001-02
Alumni Board Executive Committee:
Craig DeWitt, president-elect; Mavis Moon, secretary; Ron Baylor, president.

Alumni Association Board members wondered why its leaders would mail them toothbrushes in the middle of the summer. Was it a commentary about personal hygiene? How about a subtle reminder to prepare for a long stay during Board sessions at Calvin?

Neither was true. The three members of the Association's 2001-02 executive committee was preparing their alumni colleagues for the theme for the year: "Reach." The toothbrushes had "Reach" emblazoned on the handles and a card was enclosed with each reading, "Imagine the possibilities."

Board President Ron Baylor '77 (Kalamazoo, Mich.) opened the October meetings of the organization with a presentation on the "Reach" theme and its four components—"Reach Up" for personal excellence as individual Board members; "Reach Out" to spread the word about Calvin to new people and places and to encourage greater alumni participation in Association and college activities; "Reach Across" in order to achieve greater diversity in alumni leadership, activities and programming; and "Reach Within" to emphasize and better utilize the impressive legacy and traditions of the college.
For background music, there was a disc player providing songs with "Reach" in the titles and on the back of each Board member's chair hung a t-shirt with four increasingly larger renditions of "Reach" on one side. The points of the main theme were certainly driven home!

Baylor was assisted in the opening session by executive committee members Craig De Witt '81 (Grand Rapids), president-elect, and Mavis Kok Moon '78 (San Jose, Calif.), secretary.

"We hope to inspire each Board member, committee and chapter to carefully review the four 'Reach' ideas and to develop personal and group strategies to advance the Association's effort in them," said Baylor.

The "Reach" theme was particularly pertinent to the college's new admissions marketing materials, which suggest a new college tagline, "Minds in the Making." College vice-president Tom McWhertor led the Board in a lively discussion that included talk about how the "Minds" material and the "Reach" theme of the Association might intersect.

After hearing a faculty presentation by psychology professor Wayne Joosse, participating in the Student Alumni Association's sophomore dinner event and voting for the recipients of alumni awards, the Board divided into committees and began connecting the "Reach" theme to the specific work of the Board.

The faculty relations committee recommended that the Association once again support the Calvin English department's Faith and Writing Conference with a grant to provide scholarships for younger alumni who may have a bit of trouble handling the full conference fee. The Board agreed and these funds are available through the conference organizers.
Career services committee members heard about how the troublesome economy was increasing alumni traffic for counseling and support in that office. There was also discussion about retooling the database system that alumni and students use for career networking.

Scholarships committee members pored through scores of applications for assistance on off-campus study ventures and a number of awards were approved.

Similar endeavors were accomplished within other work groups and the meetings culminated in a visioning session in preparation for the Association's next five-year strategic plan, which will be in effect beginning in the next Board year.
The Alumni Board meets again during Homecoming Weekend, February 7-9, 2002.

Homecoming 2002: "Songs of the Knight"
Join us on campus Feb. 4-9 for alumni chapels, a variety of musical and theatrical performances, an alumni swim meet, and more!

2001-2002 Alumni Board
Meet the 23 members who represent you on the Alumni Association Board

Alumni Events Calendar
Information on alumni chapter events around North America

A bi-monthly or as-needed email newsletter sharing the latest news from Calvin

Festival of Faith and Writing
The Alumni Association offers scholarships for recent alumni to attend

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