Dear fellow alumni,
This year marks 20 years since I graduated from American University’s School of Communication. I could not be more proud of my connection to my alma mater and its continued impact in the community, across the country, and throughout the world.
Throughout my career, I have been amazed at the number of professionals in the industry who began their careers at American University. Today, as the division director for the School of Communication’s Public Communication department, I have the unique opportunity to influence AU’s current students with the lessons I learned here as an undergraduate. Each day, I witness the power of this great institution in shaping our next generation of leaders. I know this is only possible because of our incredible support from alumni like you.
I am a proud alumna, faculty member, and donor to the School of Communication. Our academic programs, experiential learning opportunities, and innovative new building provide our students with first-class exposure to the communication field, and it is our alumni who truly make these experiences possible. Last week, I attended the kickoff to the 12th annual SOC Alumni Mentor Program. In the history of this program, 233 alumni have mentored our students, providing them with tangible advice regarding internships; resume building, and networking skills.
Our alumni involvement does not end there. Each January, numerous alumni open their doors for our students during the New York City site visits, allowing attendees the chance to speak with human resource representatives, seek career advice from top executives in communication firms, and to gain insight into the realities of the professional world. Our active SOC alumni base is essential in preparing students for success after their time at AU and providing valuable connections that have launched countless careers.
In addition to direct contact with students, our alumni have an impact on the life of our students through generous gifts to SOC. With the doors to the renovated McKinley Building open, it is easy to forget that we are still in need of philanthropic support to meet our fundraising goals for the Campaign for SOC. Gifts to this project are a long-term investment in the future of SOC and have the ability to influence the next generation of students, who will become the future leaders in our field.
Please join me in positively shaping the future of the SOC community by making an investment in your alma mater through a gift to the Campaign for SOC. Our joint efforts will ensure SOC’s commitment to providing students with top-notch educational experiences in a facility that is able to accommodate the fast paced and ever evolving (but always exciting) communication field.
And if you happen to find yourself on or near campus sometime in the near future, stop by, see the new building, attend a class, meet with some students and take a nostalgic stroll on the quad. As an alumni, remember that you will always have a life-long connection to the School of Communication, and we welcome your involvement and contributions.
Pallavi Damani Kumar BA/SOC/SPA ’94
Division Director, Public Communication, SOC