Prof Pride Full Circle event provides networking opportunities between BIPOC students and alumni

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Alumni and students enjoy dinner together. - Contributor / Marcus Young

Navigating college, outside of the classroom, can be a challenge, especially when students are working to pursue a career while simultaneously juggling classwork and extracurricular activities. This stress can heighten when fears develop of not being able to transition into a career after graduation. This is one of the reasons Prof Pride Full Circle was organized by Student Government President Brianna Reagan, who welcomed both alumni and students to campus Friday night for dinner and a night of networking at Business Hall. 

The event was focused particularly on aiding and assisting the BIPOC (Black, indigenous, people of color) community, and was centered on allowing for conversation and connections to be made between alumni and students. The undergraduate event was not the first networking event to be offered, but stood out to many who attended for its emphasis on alumni engagement. 

“I feel like this event is special for that reason. We wanted to connect Rowan with Rowan, and there can be many resources on campus that students do not tap into relating to alumni, so it was something we wanted to create,” said Esther Lendore, a senior at Rowan who was also a part of the organization of the event. 

Attendees were also thankful for a space and event for the BIPOC community, both alumni and students alike. 

“I always wanted to be a part of the Black Alumni Network, and just being here and speaking with Ms. Melanie Burney was great. I hope I am able to join once I graduate to continue to help students here at Rowan,” said Sophie Ogunsanmi, a senior at Rowan who majors in psychological sciences.

Among the resources available, besides the plethora of expertise and knowledge provided by alumni, included the University Advising Center (UAC) and Office of Alumni Engagement. Lateefa Scott, a student intern in the Masters Program at Rowan, was in attendance and representing the UAC, and gave a quick overview of how they work to help students. 

“The center offers help with resume writing, mock interviews, career exploration, and internship exploration. We also help alumni students who are returning to aid them in navigating their career paths,” said Scott. 

Carly Marsella, assistant director in the Office of Alumni Engagement, explained their role on campus and how students can become active alumni upon graduation. 

“We are about 110,000 alumni strong, and we also have a club called Student Alumni Association, a club for undergraduate students, allowing for even more connections to be made beyond tonight,” said Marsella. 

Ms. Melanie Burney and Mr. Anthony Phillips, Co-Presidents of the Rowan University Black Alumni Network, offered genuine and inspiring remarks near the close of the evening, promising there to be more events like this one, with even more alumni happy to give back to their alma mater.

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