Continuing the Legacy
By Crystal Ward Kent '78
Photo by Perry Smith
Ted Dey '84 almost didn't attend UNH. "I was living in North Carolina and figured I would go to the state university there. But my dad [K. v. R. Dey Jr. '48] was a UNH alum, and he kept saying that UNH was something special. He encouraged me to take a look. I felt comfortable right away. Coming north broadened my horizons in ways I never expected."
At UNH, Dey was busy. He was a Student Ambassador, president of Sigma Alpha Epsilon and was active in intramural sports. "My fraternity meant a lot to me. We took a lot of pride in our house and we did good things. Each year, SAE sponsored a volleyball tournament that raised thousands for charity. My experience at UNH showed me that if you want something to happen, you need to make it happen. It was an important lesson to learn."
Now, as the new president of the alumni board of directors, Dey is planning to make it happen at the Alumni Association, as well. He envisions the association being "bold and aggressive" in its plans to stay connected with alumni, and to help alumni stay in contact with each other.
"The association used to be primarily class oriented," he says. "But classes in recent decades are so large that the attachment to a class is not as strong. Students are forming bonds through their dorms, campus organizations, sports teams and career fields. How we serve alumni is changing. This is how we'll keep tomorrow's alumni involved, connected and returning to UNH. My goal, and the board's, is to keep this initiative going."
Dey wants students to feel connected to UNH, and he says traditions, old and new, are key. "We want students to feel part of the alumni heritage before they graduate. For example, a great new tradition was born this year with the unveiling of the wildcat sculpture. At graduation, hundreds of students and their friends and families had their pictures taken with the wildcat. This is a legacy that will continue on for many years to come."
Dey also wants students to know that alumni support and commitment to UNH has allowed the university to thrive and grow. "Through their efforts, UNH is a great school," he says. "Soon, it will be time for the students of today to give to the next generation. They will determine the shape of UNH's future, and become part of a great legacy."
And the Winners Are . . .
Two UNH alums won the Profile of Service Award in 2007: William Pizzano '49, former director of alumni activities, and John Power '59, a founding director of the UNH Foundation. Other award winners include the late Barbara Smart Lucy '50, the late William Savage '57 and Dorothy Stella '47, who all won the Alumni Meritorious Service Award; Maj. Gen. Roland Lajoie '58, who won the Award of Excellence for Outstanding Achievement; and Michael Rollo '06, who received the Young Alumnus/Alumna Achievement Award.
In the Spotlight
Networking in the Big Apple
Jeremy Edmunds '99 reaches out to New York City alums
By Rachel M. Collins '81
Photo by Simon Biswas
Jeremy Edmunds '99 knew immediately when he graduated from UNH that he wanted to move to New York City.
"I love urban living," he says. "It's great to be a five- to 10-minute walk from world-class museums, restaurants, coffee shops—all these wonderful urban amenities."
But Edmunds, who is from New Durham, N.H., also wanted to stay connected to UNH.
The only hitch was that there hadn't been an active chapter of the Alumni Association in New York City in eight to 10 years.
He immediately decided to do something about it. First he contacted the Alumni Association to volunteer his services. Then he sat down at his computer and started his campaign, reaching out, with the help of the Alumni Association, to the more than 600 known graduates in the area.
"We wanted to maintain a connection to Durham," says Edmunds, who works as a sustainability adviser to a real estate developer, focusing on environmentally friendly buildings. "I also wanted to reach out and get to know people who were established in the community."
Before long, he found out that there were hundreds of others who were interested in getting together for Christmas socials, UNH sporting events and other social gatherings. And once he had the concept in place, Edmunds says he had the Alumni Association's help in promoting events through e-mail.
As it turns out, Edmunds' interest in networking with other alums is shared by lots of other New Yorkers. "I joined just to network basically," says Deepa Dahal '05G. "It was a way to get to meet people because I didn't know anyone when I moved to New Jersey." When she's not traveling for her job with a consulting firm in pharmaceuticals, Dahal attends the group's social events.
"Most of us didn't know each other at UNH," Edmunds says. "I had crossed paths with a few in the Student Senate or downtown, but now I'm getting to know them better—after graduation."
Though the Christmas social has been the largest annual event hosted by the chapter—it attracts alums from the 1950s to recent grads—Edmunds says the group also has met to cheer on UNH's football and ice hockey teams, watching the games on television. In addition, the alums have gone to see teams play in person, including the men's basketball team at Columbia, the football team at Hofstra and an ice hockey game against Yale.
The chapter has extended its reach beyond social events as well, having organized a range of community service events, Edmunds says. "We've been involved with donating coats for the homeless," he says. "And we've helped the parks department clean up public parks."
For now, he says, the focus of the group is social. "People aren't looking to pad their resumes here," he says. "They're doing it for fun and to get to know people."
Edmunds' next goal is to reach out to even more alumni. Right now, that's by e-mail. "Until we find a more proactive way to do business, all someone has to do is let the Alumni Association know they're in the area," he says, and provide an e-mail address. Then they'll start getting notified whenever the chapter is having an event.
Edmunds says he's enjoyed every minute of his chapter volunteer work. "I've met a lot of wonderful people I wouldn't have otherwise."
E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line "Alumni Events" to receive event notices.
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