On February 11, 2022, St. Andrews Alumni Council met on campus and by Zoom. This is a report to the alumni body. Below: Alumni Weekend 2022, new Equestrian Hall of Fame, Rooney Coffman Photobook, Faculty & Staff Appreciation, Donations Are Up, Graduate Satisfaction is High, and more.
Alumni Weekend is back! After two years of going virtual, we are planning an in-person Alumni Extravaganza the weekend of April 22, 2022. Mark your calendars! Rest assured that we are planning outdoor venues for most activities. Adding to the excitement, St. Andrews has scheduled our weekend to coincide with Extravaganza. In Stanton Cadow’s survey about Alumni Weekend, more than 129 respondents say they are likely to attend. We are anticipating a great turnout. Please take a minute with the 5-question, Alumni Weekend survey if you have not already done so. Stay tuned. More information to follow.
Many thanks to Deb O’Neill who joined St. Andrews Alumni Council by invitation and provided her experience and insight about organizing Alumni Weekend.
Faculty and Staff Appreciation
Charles “Wally” Mann reported on a faculty/staff appreciation effort completed for the holidays. Wally went to campus, representing all alumni, and gave each of the 150 employees a $25 Food Lion gift certificate, saying please let alumni buy a pie or beverage for your holiday meal. Wally had an opportunity to speak at an all-employee meeting, just before they left for their winter break, expressing our appreciation for all faculty and staff at St. Andrews. Using private shares, email chains, and the private directory in the alumni-run SocialKnights.net, we secretly shared a GoFundMe page and quickly raised the thousands of dollars needed for this project. With the help of Interim-President Ellen Bernhardt, we were able to keep it a surprise for almost all St. Andrews employees. Many thanks to the donors including:
- Dawn Allison-Ruiz
- Janice “Fashion” Adamson
- Maria Bostian
- Dr. Heather Jenkins Brazzell & Gary Brazzell
- Martin Brossman
- Damon W. Byrd
- Katherine “Buttercup” Clark
- Matthew Clark
- RA Dondanville
- Bonnie Greer Johnson
- Meg and Allen Johnson
- Charles “Wally” Mann
- Robin Mann
- Matthew McElwee
- Laurie Nederveen
- Deb O’Neill
- Susan Pell
- Elizabeth Scott
- Jessy Siefken
- Cheryl S Stalls
- Gregg Stupinski
- Abe VanWingerden
- Richard Yercheck
- Charles Young
- And anonymous donors
Our local Chick-fil-A also donated a gift card for all St. Andrews employees at that meeting.
Equestrian Hall of Fame
We resolved to create an Equestrian Hall of Fame award later this year, and to name the first inductee at the Alumni Weekend Awards Banquet 2023. We noticed that the Athletic Hall of Fame award is structured under the Athletic Department which does not cover equestrian athletes. The equestrian program falls under academics, not athletics. We therefore resolved to create a recognition covering the equestrian program which is such a vital part of St. Andrews.
Rooney Coffman Photobook
By Homecoming 2022, we are very likely to create a photo book featuring the St. Andrews photography of Rooney Coffman and honoring his life’s work at St. Andrews. The current plan is that 15% of proceeds will go to Rooney Coffman and 85% of proceeds will go to St. Andrews.
Other various projects, fund raisers, and fun raisers, were planned for 2022.
Welcoming Hunter Allen
We were pleased to welcome Hunter Allen (’69) who is returning to council as member. Hunter is a management consultant, business turnaround specialist, and President of Allen Industries International.
We received campus reports from Dr. Annette Page Webster, Program Chair for Business & Economics, Stanton Cadow, Vice President of Institutional Advancement, Dr. Ellen Bernhardt, Interim Campus President St. Andrews Laurinburg, and fellow alumnus Dr. Keith Wade, College President. We also had some time with Dr. Edna Ann Loftus, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Dr. John Knesel, Chairperson Department of Natural & Life Sciences, and Brian Stanley, Vice President of Enrollment Management. As they described new student learning initiatives, what emerged was a theme of learning through community service with various real, impactful projects relevant to Scotland County youth.
Donations are up over the same time last year. The end-of-year campaign 2021 reversed two previous years of declining donations and finished more than 30% higher than the previous year. Thank you to all the alumni who rallied to, as Keith Wade says, keep the ladder down for those following behind us.
Renovations are complete and looking fabulous. Pipers will serve Starbucks, sandwiches, wings, and other food students can buy with flex dollars in their meal plan.
St. Andrews gets detailed satisfaction surveys from graduates every year. As part of her presentation, Dr. Berhnardt shared recent results. In categories of critical thinking, written expression, oral expression, and other traditional liberal arts domains, graduate satisfaction percentage has been in the high 90s each year from 2018 to 2021. Satisfaction with overall academics has also been in the 90s in those years.