Alumni
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    FANS: A Personal Reflection

    October 23, 2018
    By: Brianna Tucciarone '20

    The Future Alumni Network of Scranton, commonly referred to as FANS around campus, is a student-led organization focused on bridging the gap between students and alumni by creating a home for meaningful relationships to flourish. The club allows students to begin considering what they may be interested in after graduation by testing the waters through club meetings, events and networking opportunities with alumni; ultimately, it creates a meeting place for Royals looking to help support each other. FANS is a club open to students of all majors, and, as its president, I can confidently state that we welcome the partnership of any alumni willing to network with undergraduate students.

    Before entering my first FANS meeting my freshman year at Scranton, I could have never guessed I would find the passion for developing connections between Scranton students and alumni that is so dear to my heart today. FANS was already a club on campus when I joined with the wonderful Alex Maier, assistant director of annual giving, leading our pack. Her positive energy and willingness to work with students was very exciting and kept us engaged. We have been fortunate to work closely with the Alumni Society Advisory Board and the University’s Advancement Office in all that we do, and their support has allowed us to continue to grow our program each year. From hosting us in their own homes to coming back to campus for our events and even taking students out to dinner, we are grateful for the sponsorship of the Scranton alumni who allow FANS to thrive.

    After that first year, Alex asked me to come on as FANS president for the upcoming school year and assist her with the activities of the club. I was honored to accept the position and began brainstorming immediately on how to grow FANS into what I knew it could become. Reworking our goals, expanding to include new members and discovering our unique abilities as a club on campus took time. Navigating our way around the kinks as we went along made the team closer and, in time, the pieces came together as FANS continued to succeed. Throughout that time, I was excited to find something very special happening at every FANS event: our community was beginning to form. I am still excited by the sparkle in an alumna’s eye as she shares a favorite memory, the tenacity of a student determined to meet an alumna currently working in her dream career and the remarkable spirit displayed by the men and women for and with others who network with us at FANS events. Becoming a part of FANS has made me a better leader and I strive to give others within our organization the same amazing experience.

    As I walked into my second year as president, we welcomed Ruth David’14, coordinator for student engagement, to help grow our team, and we increased student representation by adding Renzo Barrenechea’20 and Madelena Pine’21 to our leadership board. Our team now works together on developing alumni relationships, event planning, member retention, gathering useful networking tips, meeting preparation and more as FANS continues to mature, and our students and alumni continue to benefit from their interactions with it.

    In the coming year, I would like to see new FANS events on campus for students and alumni to network with each other in different settings so that students can become more comfortable in a diverse array of social situations. I also would like to see FANS partner with other offices on campus so our members can be given the most current networking and career planning information available. That information will enable them to enter into conversations with alumni as prepared as possible, which will in turn aid them in achieving their career objectives. As president, my goal each year for FANS has been to see more members join our club, and, at the outset of every year, I pick a number, keep it in my head, and hold myself accountable to that number throughout the year. I have come to understand, however, that, whether I reach the number in my head or not, the more important goal is to foster the connections my fellow students are developing with alumni by facilitating a space for that to happen. For me, that is of greater value.

    If you’re interested in learning more about FANS, please visit scranton.edu/fans or our Facebook page, or contact me directly at brianna.tucciarone@scranton.edu.

    Brianna Tucciarone '20 is president of the Future Alumni Network of Scranton (FANS).
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