I love the fall season. As a young boy, it was the season that mixed the sorrow of losing summer fun and the joy of reuniting with friends at school. While a student at the University of Oregon some thirty years ago, I had the same mixed emotions. Those summer breaks were fun, but I always enjoyed leaving the hot, desert plains of Prineville, Oregon, and heading back to the lush, tree-filled community of the UO. I knew I would soon run into friends from the previous year, and welcomed the awe that overcame me at the start of each academic year.
Fast forward to 2013, and I still get excited as students head back to the University of Oregon for the fall term. Our community is alive this week with the energy of new and returning students. And as the campus community embraces this new season, your UO Alumni Association is excitedly embracing a season of refreshed focus as well.
The UOAA is moving into the second year of its long-range strategic plan. With that, we’ve begun the process of boldly advancing our mission to make the University of Oregon even stronger. It will be accomplished by fostering lifelong relationships with our alumni.
UO alumni are experiencing an entirely new set of programming options. Showcasing the academic excellence of our alma mater are events like our Portland Science Nights. The UOAA has added the Duck Career Network to help our alumni in networking and advancing their careers with other Ducks. The association has expanded its presence with the regional chapters, increased member rewards and is continuing to engage alumni in valuable philanthropic endeavors that make our communities better.
Your alumni association has also undergone a substantial visual overhaul – including a new website, new printed material, new monthly e-news design and a new logo reflecting the direction of our strategic plan. This new logo provides a subtle nod to our classic roots yet uses a bold font reflecting the energy of our move in a new, invigorating direction.
Like students returning to our campus, the UOAA enters this season reflecting on the successes of last year … and looking forward to what is ahead. We recognize that we aren’t quite there, but we are proud of the strides we have taken.
Do your own reflecting. Don’t rush through this fall and miss out on seeing leaves change colors. And while you’re at it, take time to check out all that the UOAA is offering, and let us know what you think.