Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Congratulations Class of 2010!

Commencement is a bittersweet time for graduating seniors and their families. As their college days come to an end and the new alumni begin to venture out into the world seeking careers, they are excited for what the future holds, yet somewhat sad about the experiences they are leaving behind.

On the eve of graduation, alumni with their families and friends, gathered at the Wise Alumni House for the Commencement Celebration. Guests enjoyed complimentary hors d'eouvres while Sammy C. Hawk made an appearance and door prizes were given away. It was a joyous night for alumni to celebrate their accomplishments and share plans for what's ahead.

We are excited to welcome more than 1,300 new alumni who participated in the Commencement Ceremonies on December 11. Among them are 1069 undergraduate students and 268 graduate students. For those who wish to have a keepsake of their ceremony, DVD's are available from the alumni office. Congratulations on your accomplishments and we look forward to serving our newest group of alumni!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Welcoming a new season on UNCW's campus

While the leaves turning colors of reds and oranges brings beautiful changes on campus, it also brings back many memories for alumni. The weather’s chill has the students putting on their coats, but it’s not quite cold enough to put away the teal rainbows. The sporadic seventy degree days lure Seahawks to dig their feet in the sand, even in December. Daylight savings time begins and suddenly getting out of class at 4:45 pm seems too late.
Photo Credit UNCW/Jamie Moncrief
Walk around campus and you will hear students buzzing about their exam schedules and how excited they are for the upcoming break. Although weeks away, the festive decorations on campus spur conversations about holiday plans and travels.

Head over to Trask to enjoy a basketball game and notice that although Midnite Madness has passed, spirit filled nights still keep the excitement high for our student athletes. Cheers erupt from the bleachers and the dance team and pep band entertain the crowd during halftime.

Photo Credit UNCW/Jamie Moncrief
Kenan Auditorium, Lumina Theater and the Cultural Arts Building showcase a full schedule with holiday entertainment for all ages. Performances by current students, alumni and others can be enjoyed with family and friends.

As the semester comes to a close and the holidays are upon us, we welcome another season on UNCW’s campus.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Goodbye student years. Hello alumni friends!

These last four years have been some of the best years of my life; college is an experience unlike anything else. It seems like just yesterday I was moving into Graham/Hewlett dorm and now I am preparing for Commencement just next week. Although the job market is quite frightening, I will take what I have learned with me throughout my future endeavors. Between my studies and social experiences I have gained the most invaluable education which helped shape me into the person I am today. I have learned much about responsibility, respect and determination, and many more of the skills that will assist my future in the professional world.

My internship with the UNCW Alumni Association has been unlike any other. I have not only had the opportunity to network with alumni professionals throughout the world, but also work with a truly amazing office. I have gained significant experience in marketing, writing and event planning. Through these experiences, I have developed into an educated individual, ready to conquer what comes next. The thought of graduating college is quite bittersweet; I am both excited to start a career but afraid to leave the comforts of college life. As I become an alumna, I will stay in touch with the university through the friendships and mentors I have established. I feel that I am ready to take the next step in life and see what the future holds.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

We are thankful for... you!

In the Alumni Relations office we are lucky to be working with and meeting UNCW alumni every day. Since 1947, UNCW (formerly Wilmington College) has produced more than 55,000 alumni who soar higher every year. We are thankful for each and every one of you. Here are a few who work hard to make a difference and we're proud to call them UNCW Alumni:

Dr. Rhett King ’03 furthered his education after attending UNCW and recently opened a local chiropractic office, King Chiropratic. Rhett is also the founder of Wilmington Health Nuts, a group who organizes and participates in various activities every other Saturday to showcase different fitness and exercise opportunities available in the area.

Bonnie England ’05 was a double art major who has been working to develop the creative arts community in Wilmington over the past few years. As former owner of Bottega Gallery & Art Bar, and originator of Diva Made, a creative women’s exchange, Bonnie’s new venture is an all-encompassing art center and lounge named Projekte.

Dawn Carter ’89 received her degree in Psychology and currently manages volunteers and fiscal support as the Director of Resources for the Good Shepherd Center in Wilmington. The center provides meals and beds for homeless in the area and transitions as many as 100 homeless men, women and families back to housing and independence each year.

Harrison James Sasser '09 attended UNCW as a business major and has an eye for style and opportunity. The recent graudate just opened a new men's clothing store, The Gentlemen's Corner, in Lumina Station.

Ray Buchanan '72 received his degree in Philosophy and Religion before continuing his studies and later forming Stop Hunger Now in 1998. Working with international partners, the organization has provided more than $70 million in direct aid and 34 million meals to 72 countries world wide.

Jason Nista '08, Rocco Quaranto '08 and Wells Struble '08, pooled their cash soon after graduation to open Fuzzy Peach, a self-serve frozen yogurt bar in Wilmington. The trio has already explored additional locations and franchising opportunities.

Kimberly Stokes '91 majored in Special Education and is currently the UNCW Site Lead Teacher for the Transition Program for Young Adults. This community-based program, for people 18 years or older with moderate to severe disabilities, teaches skills for their transition from student to real world independence.

Meredith Sullivan '01 &  Kristen Beckmeyer '01, completed their degrees in business and after turning down other opportunities, returned to Wilmington to deliver yummy treats. They opened Coastal Cupcakes, first with a downtown location and soon after, a tasty spot near Wrightsville Beach.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Seahawks Soaring on Capitol Hill

Students attend UNCW for a variety of reasons, whether it’s the academic programs, the location or the size of the institution. After graduation, many choose to travel to different parts of the world. Internship opportunities brought Jon Thompson ‘07, Kaitlin Helms ‘08, and Walter Zaykowski ‘07 into the political field. Jon, now a spokesman for the National Republican Congressional Committee, handles the radio and television duties, which includes working closely with Republican Congressmen and candidates to appear on national television and radio interviews. Kaitlin is currently the Executive Assistant to Congressman Mike McIntyre, where she has seen him through a full election cycle. Walter has the role of Investigator working for Senator Burr in his capacity as Ranking Member of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee. He conducts oversight duties over the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and advises the Senator on necessary actions with regards to the agency.

Whether it was the professors, the friends or even their studies, UNCW is what got these alumni to where they are today. Walter explains that “going to the school was the reason I was brought into Senator Burr’s office for an interview and preceding that, my friends and network from the university assisted me with moving to DC and defining a career path when I was first starting out.” Kaitlin shared that many of the theories and concepts she studied in college, are the same that she uses at work today. Jon feels that although he didn’t share the same political views with his professors, he learned that compromise and discussing the issues goes a lot farther than doing nothing. “Working in the political profession in Washington, DC now – what I learned in the halls of Leutze come in handy daily. In this tense political climate, I think more would benefit from similar teachings,” explains Jon.

Jon, Kaitlin and Walter are all excited for the UNCW Alumni Pregame Social coming up on November 29. This will be the first official alumni social in the DC metro area. Kaitlin explains that “A group of [alumni] have gotten together informally about once a month for a year now,” but she knows that “there are many Seahawks living in the DC metro area with whom we have yet to connect. This will be a great opportunity to get everyone together.” Jon shares that he is “looking forward to seeing the Seahawks make up for it this time around.”

As an alumnus now living in Washington, DC, having something familiar around provides comfort for these recent graduates. Walter knows many other alumni in the area, either neighbors or colleagues and even a Seahawk roommate. He explains that they get together “for drinks and to pine for the days of sitting on Wrightsville Beach without a care in the world. It’s nice to have a good representation of UNCW alumni involved in politics and to see a friendly face from our college days at UNCW.”

Monday, November 8, 2010

Meet UNCW's New Athletic Director Jimmy Bass, at the TEALgate!

UNCW's new AD, Jimmy Bass will be attending the Cape Fear Alumni Chapter's TEALgate on Nov. 18, before UNCW takes on Morehead State.

Bass was UNCW’s first full-time athletics fundraiser in 1986. He also served as Executive Director of the UNCW Student Aid Association (Seahawk Club), and Associate Director of Athletics. Bass has spent the past three years at East Carolina University, where he had great success as the Senior Associate Athletics Director for External Operations. Prior to his most recent position with ECU, he held other positions at Mississippi State, N.C. State, Pittsburgh, and Davidson. Bass also has experience in development, ticketing, marketing and Alumni Relations. At NC State, he served as the Associate Vice Chancellor for Alumni Relations and Executive Director of the Alumni Association.

The TEALgate is a great opportunity for alumni and friends to meet Jimmy, while enjoying food, drinks, games and Seahawk Spirit!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Meet Jensen Caudle ’05, Vice-Chair of the Charlotte Area Alumni Chapter.

Jensen Caudle ’05 attended UNCW for a few different reasons, one of those being his love of the coast. In middle school, he attended the summer camp Marine Quest at the university because he had a great interest in Marine Biology. Although the professional interest did not remain the same as he grew older, it gave him an early taste of UNCW. After graduating, Jensen now resides with his wife, Mallory Caudle ’05, in his hometown of Harrisburg, NC, located right outside of Charlotte.

The Alumni Association currently has regional chapters in the Cape Fear, Triangle, and Triad areas. Charlotte has over 3,000 alumni, making it the third largest concentration of UNCW graduates in North Carolina. Jensen volunteers for the Charlotte Area Alumni Chapter Steering Committee because he wants to build his network. “UNCW gave me a wonderful education and great memories, but it was the people that made it that way.  This is my way of saying thank you,” explains Jensen. There is an ever-growing knowledge and awareness of UNCW in the Charlotte area. Regardless of what school they attended, people always want to know about UNCW.

The Charlotte Alumni Chapter is hosting their first Alumni Interest Dinner on Thursday, November 11th. Jensen, the vice-president of the Charlotte Area Alumni Chapter Steering Committee, looks forward to meeting alumni who are from the area, as well as catching up with old friends. “I see UNCW stickers on cars all the time, I know there are a lot of Seahawks in this area and I hope to see a great turnout,” explains Jensen. The alumni chapter is a great way to reconnect with past friends and to build a social network. Jensen explains that with the “sheer numbers of alumni in the area, we are bound to be successful. It will be great to reconnect with old classmates and make new friends.”

Monday, October 25, 2010

Family and Alumni Weekend 2010 Enjoyed by Seahawks of All Ages!

Alumni and families of current students came to campus from all over the country to take part in Family & Alumni Weekend on October 15-17, 2010. The university hosted 25 events beginning on Friday and wrapping up on Sunday. Alumni in attendance ranged from the first graduating class of Wilmington College in 1947 to our most recent 2010 graduates. The UNCW Alumni Association focused on three key events: The Golden Wing Society Reunion, Legacy Pinning Ceremony and Young Alumni Reunion.

The graduates of Wilmington College were invited to join their fellow classmates for a brunch on campus. From the classes of 1947-1960, over 30 graduates attended to celebrate achieving and exceeding the milestone of a 50 year alumni status. Classmates reunited and discussed fond memories of their college days. Following the brunch was a student guided trolley tour of UNCW’s campus.

The honor of being a UNCW student was celebrated with many families during the Legacy Pinning Ceremony where over 100 people gathered to commemorate making UNCW a family legacy. Whether it was a sibling, grandparents or parent that attended UNCW, many different legacy students were in attendance. Terry Cottle ‘84 and wife Cynthia ‘85 pinned two of their daughters at the ceremony. Terry explains that the ceremony, “[gave] us a lot of pride and satisfaction when we had the opportunity to share with others that like myself and my wife, two of our three daughters also are attending UNCW.” Terry and his wife both knew that they could count on UNCW to be wonderful college experience for their daughters because they had enjoyable experiences themselves.

Over 100 alumni from the classes of 2000-2010 came back to campus Saturday evening for the Young Alumni Reunion. Lindsay Hushe ‘09 explained that she “loved seeing friends that attended school with me but also individuals that graduated before I did. It was interesting and gave me a sense of pride being a Seahawk to hear other graduates share their stories of success, experiences and where they are currently.” Lindsay also explained that she loved the music by the band Machine Gun. The drinks were flowing, the hors d'oeuvres were enjoyed and Seahawks danced the night away in the company of their classmates.  The class of 2010 celebrated their 10 year milestone and the class of 2005 celebrated their 5 year milestone.

Take a look at photos from the event and see what’s coming up next  for alumni!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Graduates come back to UNCW to perform for the First Annual Alumni Music Concert

“I've never known a musician who regretted being one. Whatever deceptions life may have in store for you, music itself is not going to let you down.” –Virgil Thompson (American Composer 1986-1989)

It seems there is truth to what Thompson believes. Ryan Woodall ‘03 grew up around music but started out majoring in Biology at UNCW before changing over to the Music Department. Woodall says, “Deciding to study bass was probably the wisest decision I've made concerning my musical career as it seems no matter where I go someone always needs a bassist.  It's a decision that [has] taken me all over the world and allowed me many opportunities such as playing in the Cab Calloway band and performing with Lynn Roberts.”

Performing is a huge part of being a musician and many of them live for it. Justin Hoke ‘07 has been playing guitar for 16 years and loves performing. “The best part about performing is being able to share my musical perspective with others. Having the opportunity to share my favorite music with my own unique interpretation is an exciting and personal experience. As a performer, my goal is to share the enjoyment that I have experienced from the music with the audience,” explains Hoke.

Many students have come to UNCW and initially majored in something other than music and then later switched after being exposed to it in different ways. “I had always been in music, but didn't think I wanted to study it full time.  I registered for all of the music courses, thinking I would minor in it, and found myself more and more in the music building and less and less over in the sciences,” says Bridgid Eversole ‘00, referring to her experience of becoming a Music major at UNCW.

These performers, and also Brad Merritt ’97, will share their talents and love of music during the first annual Alumni Music Concert on Saturday, October 23. It will be a special event featuring Department of Music alumni, followed by a dessert reception in the Cultural Arts lobby.  Tickets for the concert are $15 and include the complimentary reception and can be purchased from the Kenan Auditorium Box Office by calling 910.962.3931. All proceeds will go toward UNCW music scholarships.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Recent Alumna Publishes Children’s Book featuring Sammy C. Hawk

“Hello, Sammy C. Hawk!” is a wonderful new children’s book authored by UNCW alumna Katie White ’09.  The book was written by Katie while working as an intern in UNCW’s Office of Marketing and Communications. White was chosen to write the book because of her history of working with Storytelling in the Community, a program that sends students to local kindergarten and elementary school classrooms. White now lives in New York, but recently returned to campus to sign copies of the book.

In the book, Sammy C. Hawk, takes a young fan on a tour of campus. “Timmy”, the young fan, is also told about many of UNCW’s favorite traditions and activities, including the alumni TEALgate pre-game social, held during the basketball season, where alumni gather to celebrate and cheer on UNCW. 

The book sells for $14.95 and you can pick up your copy at the bookstore on campus, or online. Autographed copies of the book are being given away as door prizes at select upcoming alumni events!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Intern Diaries: Beginning the Job Search

As the Halloween decorations emerge, it has made me realize that this semester is flying by. Graduation is less than two months away, and the senioritis is growing increasingly difficult to overcome. Yet as the time passes most of my thoughts linger on how I will soon be entering into the professional world. While job searching can be overwhelming, I have already begun to apply for advertised positions in hopes of starting somewhere soon after graduation. With a communication studies degree, I hope to find work in Wilmington. Many of my friends graduated this May and while most of them are in grad school, the other’s who found work moved out of town. Yet I have confidence in my interpersonal skills and know that with hard work things will work out for the best. Through the assistance of college mentors, friends, family and the staff members here at the Alumni Office I feel less anxious as graduation quickly approaches.

This weekend is Family & Alumni Weekend and I am very excited to see the turnout for the Young Alumni Reunion. It will be nice to see individuals who were in my exact situation years ago and what they have done since leaving UNCW.  The reunion will be a great time, and it will be fun to have some drinks in Burney while listening to live music with my friends! If you’re interested in joining those already registered, today is the last day to register online or you can also get tickets at the door on Saturday. We’ll see you there!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Young Alumni Reunion to Host Band “Machine Gun”

As part of the celebration for the UNCW classes of 2000-2010, alumni will enjoy music from the local band “Machine Gun” on Friday, October 16, 2010. Performing as a group since the spring of 2004, the band travels to cities such as Myrtle Beach, Emerald Isle, Washington, Morehead City, Greenville, and of course, Wilmington. Machine Gun not only has been influenced by musicians of all types, but also covers songs diverse bands and artists including: AC/DC, Billy Idol, The Outfield, Sublime, Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix and many more. Made up of three members, Tommy Brothers on guitar, John white on bass, and Tony Mallard on percussion; the band is currently working on their newest CD as well as performing around eastern North Carolina and parts of South Carolina.

The Young Alumni Reunion for the UNCW classes of 2000-2010 will be held on campus in the Burney Center from 7 - 10pm. All Alumni that are attending the reunion should register online by October 13th.  Find more information about the reunion, class notes, and others who are attending at

Friday, October 8, 2010

UNCW Alumni may leave the beach, but look forward to coming back

The UNCW connection doesn’t stop after graduation, from Wilmington College to our newest graduates; UNCW values all of our alumni. Jessica Costana ‘09 is a recent graduate exploring the dynamic professional world. She claims that she “instantly knew [UNCW] was a school where [she] could both succeed and have fun.” With a communication studies degree, Jessica graduated with skills that have helped her advance both in her personal and professional life. “I walked away from UNCW as a strong communicator with an exuberant amount of enthusiasm and tenacity,” says Jessica.

Like many young graduates, Jessica’s toughest challenge after leaving UNCW was finding a job. She decided to move to New York and look for a good career fit in Public Relations or Marketing. “After many conversations with my friends and mentors I decided to take advantage of an opportunity I had in the finance industry,” says Jessica. Without this advice Jessica would not have seen what a wonderful opportunity this position was and how it’s made an impact in her career.

Jessica will be returning to Wilmington soon for the Young Alumni Reunion on Saturday, October 16, during Family & Alumni Weekend. “When I graduated in 2009 the campus was undergoing a great deal of construction such as, the new nursing building, a parking deck and more campus apartments. I am excited to see the progression of these projects as well as any other new additions on campus,” says Jessica. Although there are many things Jessica misses about UNCW, she has been fortunate to stay connected to friends and professors, and looks forward to seeing them during the reunion weekend.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Meet Tracy Pagnozzi ’98, ‘00M, Triangle Area Alumni Chapter President

The UNCW Alumni Association has regional chapters in the Triad, Cape Fear, Charlotte and Triangle areas. Next to the Cape Fear region, the Triangle Chapter is the second largest concentration of alumni, with nearly 7,900 members. The chapter was re-energized in 2008 and continues to grow exponentially. Tracy Pagnozzi ’98, ’00M is the president for the Triangle Chapter. “When I came (to UNCW) for the tour, I fell in love with the beautiful campus, the architecture, the landscape – it felt like the place where I belonged,” says Tracy.

Tracy explains that while it was a tough choice to leave after graduation, there is nothing like being involved in a regional chapter. “We are all alumni of the same university, we have a very strong thread that binds us together and gives us common ground, because of our shared experiences and our values as alumni,” explains Tracy. Sporting events, mixers, and dinners are just some of the chapter functions. The annual fall alumni dinners have included keynote speakers such as the chancellor, athletic coaches and other UNCW staff. Tracy says that being a part of a regional chapter always makes her immensely proud of the university, the alumni and their accomplishments.

Choosing to volunteer as the chapter president was easy for Tracy because it gave her an opportunity to make a personal and direct connection with many fellow alumni, to encourage them to stay involved, and much more. Whether she was in Raleigh or elsewhere, Tracy explains that “being connected to fellow alumni helps me stay connected to the university. Staying connected to the university reminds me of what a privilege it is, indeed, to be an alumna.”  She, and more than 100 other alumni already registered, are looking forward to connecting at the Triangle Chapter Fall Alumni Dinner on October 7 with guest speaker Men’s Basketball Coach, Buzz Peterson.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Meet Triad Area Alumni Chapter President: Brian Cruz ‘96

Regional Alumni chapters allow graduates to stay connected to UNCW wherever they are. Chapter functions involve reunions, networking socials, mixers and sporting events. Brian Cruz ’96, lives in Greensboro and has been the President of the Triad Area Alumni Chapter since 2009.

Brian began his undergraduate studies at Embry-Riddle in Florida on a full ROTC scholarship for Aeronautical Engineering. After a year of intense studies and training, he decided to return to the Crystal Coast. Upon his return, he worked full-time and attended night classes at Carteret Community College so he could transfer to UNCW. After graduation, Brian stayed in Wilmington and reconnected with his college sweetheart, Shannon Davis ’94, who was visiting the beach.  He decided to move to Greensboro, her hometown, so they could get married.  Currently, Brian is a general manager for Starbucks at University Commons (near Elon). This is the second store location he’s opened, his first being Mayfaire Town Center on Military Cutoff Rd.

Brian and wife, Shannon, at the 2009 Triad Alumni Chapter Fall Dinner

Being a leader in the community and helping to support his alma mater is something Brian takes pride in. He has a wealth of knowledge, energy and passion that he enjoys sharing with others. He explains that, “Volunteerism is a great outlet for me and is quite fulfilling.”

One of his favorite aspects of getting together with fellow alumni is to see the breadth and scope of their diversity. Making new friends and learning about different experiences alumni had at UNCW and since graduation is a benefit of every alumni gathering. Currently, the group is excited about their Triad Alumni Chapter Fall Dinner on Thursday, September 30th at the Greensboro Country Club. “I enjoy the fellowship and the opportunity to see old friends, make new friends and share with fellow supporters of UNCW,” says Brian.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

UNCW Student Today, Alumni Tomorrow

I’m Chelsey, a UNCW student and new intern here at the Alumni Relations Office. I came to UNCW in the fall of 2006; and as a fifth year senior I am proud to say that I will be graduating in December! Graduating college... WOW, I cannot believe that my childhood dreams of being a college girl are about to end. Let me first say that I enjoy college and sometimes wish I could remain a student forever. I have wonderful friends, amazing mentors, a great sorority, and an awesome major in communications studies.

Chelsey Allen (right) with sorority sisters.
During my junior year, I contemplated adding a professional writing certificate to boost my journalism minor. All I needed was an internship and 2 credits, so I made a list of pros and cons. Ultimately, my plan was to earn my degree from UNCW then move to NYC and get some type of adult job that you see in the movies. After the economy shift and the reality that I will not be safely submerged in classes forever, I became nervous about my approaching graduation.  Deciding to add the writing certification eased my fear of graduation by giving me more time to figure things out, and making me more competitive in my field.

Job searching is a challenging time for fresh graduates and landing that first “real world” job can be especially daunting. Yet I know that with my ambitious nature and experiences through my internship, I will succeed. Stay tuned for more updates about the final months of life as a UNCW student and the transition to alumni!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Traveling Seahawk Stays in Touch

As many UNCW graduates emerge into a world full of unknowns, staying connected to former classmates remains helpful. Graduation opens the gate of endless opportunities and experiences to explore, many of which are guided by UNCW and friends.  Katie Childs ’02 received degrees in both Business Administration – International Business and Spanish - a language, culture, and history that she loves.  Passionate about UNCW since childhood visits to Wilmington, Katie explains that “UNCW provided me with the opportunity to learn amongst top faculty and peers, and provided me with the trip of a lifetime to study abroad in Quito, Ecuador.” Katie is still close with many UNCW alumni and faculty, as well as classmates from Ecuador.

However, upon graduation Katie faced some challenges as she moved west to Los Angeles, California in search of her dream job. After the incidents of 9/11, there were sparse jobs available for a recent graduate like Katie, with an interest in International Business. She worked hard to find a job, and remained connected with her networks for help. “Using the network of friends, alumni, and professors for references and referrals for job openings I have found that we are all willing to aid our fellow Seahawks however we can,” recalls Katie. 

Traveling to places like Mexico, Ecuador and more recently Spain, where she met her Australian fiancĂ© is one of the things Katie enjoys most. She now lives in Brisbane, Australia and she still stays involved with the Alumni Association when she can. The internet has made staying connected much easier; she has even met a few Seahawks living in Australia. Katie even says that she hopes to get an alumni group going on this side of the world. “That’s next on my list – what a great opportunity to keep us all involved, even from afar!” Although Katie has finally found a place to call home; many Seahawks travel to new areas where they are faced with uncertainties. Moving away from what they know can be a frightening challenge; fortunately staying connected with fellow alumni provides friends in all places.

Read more about alumni who are making an impact in Wilmington, and all over the world during the Seahawk Summer Feature. Learn about Ryan Kawamoto '08 who works with the Ellen DeGeneres show. Check out the posts on Justin Queen '04 owner of an advanced technology web marketing company, or Lindsay Rowe '08 teaching in South Korea,  Brad Knighton '06 who plays in MLS with the Philadelphia Union and Ryan Crecelius '06 whose real estate business is helping to shape Wilmington's future.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Seahawks Build Friendships and Stay Connected

UNCW graduates know that staying connected to professors and former classmates is a great way to create opportunities. "The people I met while at UNCW have had a big impact on my life," recalls Ryan Kawamoto '08. The recent graduate stays updated on what's happening on campus and reaches out to other alumni through the Facebook page and Linkedin group, even from across the country.

While at UNCW, Ryan studied business and marketing and was actively involved in many areas of college life. Reflecting, he states, "I miss Galloway, Wag breakfast, intramural sports, CSB, being an orientation leader, a student ambassador, and most of all, immersed in school spirit." Shortly after graduation, Ryan used the connections he created while at UNCW to secure an interview with The Ellen DeGeneres Show. He packed up, traveled across the country, and landed the job. Adapting to a new area and staying on top in a competitive field hasn't always been easy, but Ryan keeps in touch with his past professors and fellow alumni who provide support and guidance. Now employed there for two years, he's enjoying every minute.

"I love interacting with everyone and creating life long friendships." Ryan's impact on UNCW is a testament to that. As a senior, he worked with the Rainbows Corporation to make a teal version of the popular footwear. Now, the bookstore carries more than four varieties of Rainbow sandals for Seahawks.

Read more about alumni who are making an impact in Wilmington, and all over the world during the Seahawk Summer Feature. Check out the posts on Justin Queen '04 owner of an advanced technology web marketing company, or Lindsay Rowe '08 teaching in South Korea,  Brad Knighton '06 who plays in MLS with the Philadelphia Union and Ryan Crecelius '06 whose real estate business is helping to shape Wilmington's future.  

Monday, August 2, 2010

Alumni Leader Helps to Grow Triangle Chapter

Over the last few years, a group of dedicated alumni and the Alumni Relations staff have been working hard to increase programming for regional chapters. As the 2008-2010 Triangle Area Alumni Chapter President, one of those alumni, Matt Glova '07, is seeing of the fruits of his labor.

Organizing more than 7,500 alumni in the triangle area is no small feat. Through networking and assisting communication efforts, Matt and the chapter's steering committee, increased attendance during annual events, such as the Durham Bulls Picnic. The group also developed new events for area alumni, a Fall Dinner held at a local country club, and a Spring Mixer for a fun night of networking and dancing.

A business major while at UNCW, Matt now works as a Certified Financial Planner in Raleigh. Along with participating on the Alumni Board of Director's, he is also a member of the E.L. White Society. Matt enjoys staying in touch with UNCW and fellow alumni and will remain on the Triangle Chapter's executive board. With the Durham Bulls alumni picnic just around the corner, he's excited to spend time with friends and meet the new UNCW basketball coaches.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Seahawks Soar In Emerging Markets

Each year, technology seems to develop faster and faster, leaving those unfamiliar with its abilities in the dark and unable to catch up. It's good to know there are resources to help a company sort through the new tactics to find what's right for their business.

Communication Studies alumnus, Justin Queen '04, got involved with the UNCW radio station and was inspired by the new path it opened for him. Enjoying communications theory classes and media law, he also spied an opportunity and soon jumped on the wave of emerging technology referred to as web marketing. By the time he was a junior, Justin was contemplating starting his own business or a career in media sales. Intrigued by this rising media power, Justin decided to put his savings in the new industry of web marketing and launch Blu Zeus.

Within six years his company has developed a national and international client base, providing digital business solutions while specializing in web-based technologies. Getting to this point hasn't been easy- Justin started the business out of his home while teaching himself programming languages. He learned that in order to grow you need to work hard, and work smart. "You fight to get established and beat the odds, being underfunded, understanding how to manage people, but most importantly, what you're good at and what you're not. I've learned to do what I'm good at and hire the best people to do the rest."

Justin encourages alumni and current students while speaking at events during CSB Business Week, and working with the Entrepreneurship Center. Attending alumni functions has also led to client referrals, another reason he chooses to stay connected with UNCW.

Seahawks have been paving the way for our future all over the world. Find out about Lindsay Rowe '08 teaching in South Korea, Brad Knighton '06 playing for MLS with the Philadelphia Union and Ryan Crecelius '06 who owns his own real estate business that gives back to our community.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Alumni Volunteers Pave the Way

Ken and his daughter at the
Grand Slam Jam held in April.
The Cape Fear Area Alumni Chapter, which hosts events for more than 18,000 local alumni, is growing their programming, thanks to great volunteers and leadership. Serving as Chapter President, Ken Dieppa '09M, enjoys the opportunity to support UNCW and the community.

Receiving his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from USF and then attending military school while in the Naval Reserves, Ken was originally brought to Wilmington while working for Corning Optical Fiber. He chose the graduate program at the Cameron School of Business due to school rankings and because the accredited MBA program could fit his busy lifestyle. Now, as a Senior Services Project Manager with GE, he enjoys spending time with other alumni in the coastal town he calls home.

"The people at alumni events are great. They are very positive and the conversations are intellectual which produce a warm and inviting atmosphere." Ken desires to continue to build affinity networks between alumni and local businesses and is looking forward to making new connections at the Alumni After Work coming up this Thursday. 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Seahawk Seeking Challenging Career Heads To South Korea

UNCW attracts students from all around the world. Many alumni also choose to live abroad after earning their degree. Making these geographic and cultural changes can be a challenge, but our Seahawks always overcome.

One alumna who is no stranger to change is Lindsay Rowe '08. After coming to UNCW in 2003 for a teaching degree, she decided to change course and seek out challenges in computer science, economics and then business. Lindsay attributes a large part of her success to the Cameron School of Business. "The degree to which they push their students was harder than any other field." The other facet of her college experience was Greek life. Lindsay recalls, "Sorority life pushed me to become more responsible for my actions and a role model for my peers".

Realizing that graduation was just around the corner, Lindsay became employed in finance, news journalism, human resources, and as a legal aide. After giving each position due effort, she realized these were not areas she wanted to pursue long-term.

Wanting to stretch her abilities even more, Lindsay researched the Peace Corps and teaching abroad. A one year contract, teaching 4-15 year olds and tutoring adults, in Seoul, South Korea was offered to Lindsay and she accepted. Overcoming the language barrier has been not quite as challenging as planning her lessons for the various ages of students. The students are very focused on secondary eduction and are under a lot of pressure, with few extracurricular activities offered.

Lindsay is looking forward to exploring new places and facing new challenges that allow her to grow. She misses strolling with her friends down Chancellor's walk, philanthropy events, study sessions, PT's burgers and fries, and Captain Bills volleyball. These memories, and the encouragement to stay driven, are what makes Lindsay grateful for attending UNCW.

Drive and ambition is evident in many of our alumni. Find out more about Brad Knighton, a goalkeeper who played hard to get into Major League Soccer, or Ryan Crecelius '06, an entrepreneur who started a realty company focused on Wilmington's future. During the next four weeks of the Seahawk Summer Feature, we'll showcase alumni who are working in television, traveling the world and more!

Monday, July 19, 2010

TEAL-OUT at the 2010 Durham Bulls Picnic!

On Thursday, August 12 join the Triangle Area Alumni Chapter for the Durham Bulls Picnic! Have a chance to mingle with guests from UNCW Athletics,
Men’s Basketball Coach - Buzz Peterson
Women’s Basketball Coach - Cynthia Cooper-Dyke
Baseball Coach - Mark Scalf
Athletic Director - Kelly Mehrtens
and get the scoop on the upcoming Seahawk Athletics season!
Tickets available until August 8
$15 adults, Kids 5yrs and under free
Includes full menu picnic, soda, beer and entry to game and party deck.
TEAL-out at the Durham Bulls Picnic for a FREE GIFT!
Each guest sporting their favorite UNCW apparel receives a free gift at the game!

Friday, July 16, 2010

First Seahawk To Reach MLS Ranks Stays Focused

Many kids dream of being a professional athlete. They work hard, focus, and sometimes it all works out. At age five, Brad Knighton '06 was into many sports, enjoying the competitive nature and team environment, but as he got older he knew soccer would be his future.

During the summer of 2003, Brad received a phone call from UNCW Soccer Coach, Aidan Heaney. During a visit to campus, the rising soccer star quickly realized that despite numerous college choices, he was destined to become a Seahawk. While playing for UNCW, Brad was named to the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) All-South Atlantic Region Second-Team after leading the Seahawks to their fourth consecutive trip to the CAA Tournament. He also earned First-Team All-CAA honors while setting a school record with a career-low 0.83 GAA in 2006-07 that ranked him third in the league. "The accolades that Brad received at UNCW were the result of his determination and hard work," said Coach Heaney. "I know he's always going to do what it takes."

The opportunity for Brad to realize his dream came in January 2006, when he became the first Seahawk to join Major League Soccer. Following in the footsteps of his mentor, Coach Heaney, Brad signed with the New England Revolution as the number 3 goalkeeper. Earning a spot on an MLS roster may have been a big undertaking, but Brad soon realized that his next challenge was to remain focused. "Coming into practice every single day and knowing [there are not many chances] to play is tough. It will take a toll on anyone. Being able to have that mental toughness and fight through it those first two years has made me a better person on and off the field."  Brad's determination and ability to always give 110% gave him the edge to beat out the number two goalie and get more action in the games. His high performance caught the attention of the Philadelphia Union, the 16th ranked team in the league, and he was picked up in this year's Expansion Draft.

Brad is currently living in Pennsylvania with his wife Britney, a 2007 UNCW nursing graduate, who works for Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children. They are expecting their first child in February.

Like Brad, UNCW alumni are reaching their goals and achieving success all over the world. Take a look at the last post on the Seahawk Summer Feature and learn about Ryan Crecelius '06, an entrepreneur who has his eyes on Wilmington's future.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Registration now open for Family & Alumni Weekend 2010!

This fall, alumni, parents and friends are invited to UNCW Family & Alumni Weekend. Held on October 15-17, the weekend will includes a ton of activities both on campus and around Wilmington. 

The Young Alumni Reunion is for the classes of 2000 through 2010 and is a party featuring live music from Machine Gun with dancing, hors d'oeuvres, wine and beer. Haven't seen the old Bookstore turned into the Burney Center yet? Well now's your chance to experience the inviting ballroom, set up like a local lounge, while you hang out with friends and reminisce about days at UNCW.  Have little ones? Complimentary childcare will be provided down the hall from the event!

The Golden Wing Society Reunion celebrates those who have been alumni for 50 or more years. The classes of 1947 through 1960 will enjoy brunch on Saturday in the Madeline Suites before boarding the trolley for a student guided tour on campus. This is a great opportunity to scope out the new buildings and hear what the Seahawks of today are doing on campus.

Honoring our alumni and incoming students who are making UNCW a family tradition is the purpose of the Legacy Pinning Ceremony held on Saturday afternoon. Alumni who have a child, grandchild or sibling currently attending UNCW will celebrate their family tradition and the bond that makes them all Seahawks.

Other weekend events include an Alumni & Parents Welcome Reception to kick things off on Friday night, Midnite Madness, kayak tours around Masonboro Island, tours of Screen Gems Studios and so much more! Space is limited at some events and tickets do sell out, so be sure to register early!

Monday, July 12, 2010

UNCW Alumni After Work- Summer Edition

Don't miss the next Alumni After Work on Thursday, July 29 from 5:30-7:30pm at Dockside. Enjoy drinks, complimentary appetizers and door prizes and you relax with friends on the water. Free Alumni Koozies will be given out at the event to each person who registers online by July 27!

Friday, July 9, 2010

UNCW Alumnus knows what it takes to Do Good

For many, starting their own venture, being their own boss and putting ideas out there for the world to see is a scary thing. While numerous UNCW alumni are entrepreneurs, we found out about a unique business concept, and the man behind it, that is sure to get attention in the Wilmington area.

Ryan Crecelius '06 completed his real estate courses while earning a criminal justice degree at UNCW. Utilizing his mentors, both at school and while employed with Coldwell Banker as a realtor, he picked apart the real estate market to find ways that it could do more for our community. A little over a year ago, Ryan used his experience, knowledge and understanding of peers to put his ideas in motion. Do Good Real Estate was born, a forward-thinking company that donates 20% of their commissions to local charities such as the Wilmington branch of Habitat for Humanity, the Surfrider Foundation, and any other cause that is near and dear to their clients heart.  Their mission of 'creating tomorrow's community' allows a seller or buyer the opportunity to make an impact in Wilmington's future and that's an idea that appeals to many.

Working with the new UNCW Entrepreneurship Center, Ryan enjoys staying in touch with UNCW and fellow alumni. His memories of professors and school days include the countless opportunities to get advice and counseling, regardless of whether it was school related or not. He appreciates the support he received from career services and how welcoming they were to his differing needs as a student and alumnus. Also an active member of the Young Brokers Council, Ryan helps to plan community events such as a Dunk Your Broker BBQ, which accommodated more than 400 people this past spring. We're so proud to have alumni like Ryan, working to make our community better for future generations.

Are you interested in finding out more about what our alumni are up to? Stay posted to see more highlights on alumni each week during our Seahawk Summer Feature!


Friday, July 2, 2010

Showcasing alumni on the Seahawk Summer Feature

UNCW has more than 55,000 alumni since the first graduating class of 1947. With its record setting enrollment of nearly 13,000 in 2009, UNCW continues to grow. Encompassing a wide area of study, UNCW offers bachelor’s degrees in 52 majors, 35 master’s degrees, a Ph.D. in marine biology and an Ed.D. in educational leadership and administration. Each one of our alumni come out of UNCW with their own experiences and goes on to lead lives of success in many different ways.

Over the next few weeks, the Alumni Blog will feature some of our alumni and the exciting ways they are making an impact in their communities, work places, with the next generation and around the world. Using their courses of study, mentoring from professors and networks of friends, they have built their lives around doing what they love. And we love them for it.

Each week will feature different alumni with a story to tell. Find a new connection with your fellow Seahawks and remember why you chose to get an education at our university on the coast.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Alumni Unite with Chapters

UNCW has more than 50,000 alumni, around half graduated in the last ten years and the majority still live in North Carolina. Keeping our alumni connected with UNCW and each other is a focus of the Alumni Association. We get alumni involved through three types of chapters; geographic, academic and affinity. Geographic chapters maintain alumni programming in areas where large numbers of alumni live. Academic chapters bring Seahawks together based on their major and affinity chapters are groups of alumni who shared the same interests and extra-curriculars while at UNCW.

For those looking to get involved, opportunities include serving on a steering committee, recruiting others to become involved, volunteering to help with specific events or simply attending events.

Chartered geographic chapters host three to four events per year in an area, depending on the number of alumni living and working there. Currently these are the Cape Fear Area, Triad Area, and Triangle Area Alumni Chapters, with plans to grow programming in the Charlotte area during the '10-'11 academic year.  Events include social mixers, sporting events and dinner meetings. Programming is added as existing events gain support and attendance.

Academic chapters host a variety of networking events on campus and around Wilmington and have a big part in Homecoming. They give alumni an opportunity to reconnect with former professors and classmates while sharing life and professional experiences since attending UNCW.

Monday, June 7, 2010

UNCW Spring Magazine online

The newest edition of the UNCW Magazine is now available online from UNCW's office of Marketing & Communications. Highlights of the issue include veterans moving from battlefields to classrooms, champion athletes winning ultimate titles, alumni changing the world, legendary leaders with a vision as well as web extras and a photo gallery celebrating the 10th anniversary of the UNCW Millenium Clock Tower. Also, a great article to check out describes alumni chapters and how you can get involved in your area or close to campus.

Share your feedback about the new online magazine with the survey available until June 30.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

CSB Alumni Chapter Speaker Breakfast Series features Bob Rippy

Robert “Bob” Sterling Rippy is a successful entrepreneur and owner of Jungle Rapids Family Fun Park in Wilmington. Jungle Rapids is one of the largest family entertainment centers in the state and includes go-karts, miniature golf, laser tag, soft play, climbing walls, and a waterpark. The park has played an important role in bringing tourists to Wilmington since 1987.

The upcoming CSB Alumni Chapter Speaker Breakfast on Thursday, Jun 24 will feature Bob Rippy as keynote speaker. Guests will enjoy an opportunity to network before the catered breakfast and Mr. Rippy's presentation on Tourism and the Economic Environment. Registration is requested before June 22 either online or by calling Kim Gargiulo at 910.962.2587.  

Fun on the water at the Alumni After Work

Hanging out on the deck at Dockside, watching the boats go by with the sea breeze keeping you cool as the sun lowers in the sky. Add in dozens of Seahawks and what do you have? Alumni After Work!

The seasonal event takes place Thursday, May 27 at 5:30 pm and is a great way to wind down with friends while having an opportunity to network with other alumni. Dockside provides free appetizers and the Alumni Association comes ready with fantastic door prizes and give-a-ways. Save time by registering online before the event.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Summer Fitness and more Alumni Benefits

Do you miss running the indoor track or a good game of 3 on 3 at the UNCW Rec Center? During the summer, alumni can enjoy these benefits once again! Sponsored by Campus Recreation, a part of Student Affairs, membership is offered to alumni on a pro-rated basis for the summer- May 10-August 7. Details and pricing is online.

Alumni can also enjoy picking up favorite summer reads at Randall Library. Books on tape, and numerous videos are also available.

Want to find more benefits and services for alumni? Check out our website for all the details.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Congratulations to the class of 2010!

As UNCW celebrates more than 60 years of graduating students, last weekend marked a special time for the class of 2010. During Friday and Saturday, May 7 and 8, four separate commencement ceremonies were held in Trask to honor over 2,000 graduating students. Departments held their own ceremonies throughout the week, as well as events for honors students and various award ceremonies that kept campus buzzing with Seahawk Spirit well into Sunday.

The UNCW Alumni Association hosted a Commencement Celebration for the graduates at the Wise Alumni House on Thursday, May 6. The Class of 2010 joined family and friends for refreshments, door prizes and tours through the historic house and gardens. More than 250 guests filled the Wise Alumni House for the festivities. Take a look at photos on the alumni Facebook page.

Just prior to the Commencement Celebration, participants in the Senior Class Gift Campaign were invited to a Senior Toast at the Chancellor's residence, the Kenan House, hosted by the UNCW Annual Fund. Graduates received a commemorative glass with the Class of 2000 etched on the sides for the special toast.

The UNCW Alumni Association congratulates our newest graduating class and hopes to see you at upcoming events to celebrate with more than 53,000 Seahawk alumni across the globe! 

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Coming back to UNCW

Ever thought about earning another degree from UNCW? Across the country there is an increase in grad student applications and UNCW is no exception. Many people say it's due to the economy and the hardships with finding a decent job right out of school. We believe that the fantastic programs offered to graduate students are having an impact on its appeal also. Take a look for yourself. 

UNCW offers a wide variety of graduate degrees to fit many interests including the nationally renowned M.F.A. in creative writing, the Ed.D. in educational leadership and administration and the Pd.D. in marine biology. Encompassing more than 30 Master's Degree Programs, 2 Doctoral Programs, and numerous Graduate Certificate Programs it's easy to see why many choose UNCW as their destination for a continuing their educational experience.

Would love to, but can't find the funds to cover a new degree? The Alumni Association offers two graduate student scholarships and there are other financial aid options from UNCW. The possibility may be closer than you think!

Wherever your journey is headed, we're glad that UNCW could be a part of it.  

Friday, February 19, 2010

Crew Club Reunion 2010

Are you looking forward to getting back in the Wilmington waters, surrounded by your Crew buddies and gliding over the Cape Fear river? 2010 marks the 24th Anniversary of rowing at UNCW and the reunion is set for February 27. 

A fun and interactive day has been planned to bring alumni back to Wilmington and the the beautiful campus of UNCW. Beginning with a row at the Wilmington Marine Center on River Road, a lunch social and then reunion dinner at the Wise Alumni House.

Register today to join the fun! 

Thursday, February 18, 2010

UNCW Homecoming 2010 Highlights Video

Without you we wouldn't be here! Take a look at the video with Homecoming highlights!

Homecoming 2010 Highlights

Where's your Seahawk Pride?
Teal was abundant in Wilmington during UNCW Homecoming 2010 during the end of January.  Seahawk Spirit was in full swing during events such as the Alumni TEALgate as well as the All Alumni Celebration. More than 1,000 alumni and friends joined the reunions, parties and activities for guests to enjoy during Homecoming week. 

The events are put on as a collaborative effort by many UNCW groups. Hosted by the Alumni Association, Homecoming events also include a Step Show and Dub Idol and other student events supported by ACE, as well as reunions from Transition Programs and various academic areas. This year, as well as in the past it has been scheduled during the Men's Basketball Season where fans can join eachother in Trask to cheer on our beloved Seahawks.

You can find more highlights and photos from the festivities on the Alumni Association's website and also on their Facebook page. It is safe to say that once a Seahawk always a Seahawk!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Show your Seahawk Spirit for a chance to win a FREE Homecoming 2010 T-shirt!

Are you Still Rockin' Your TEAL? If so, show us! Upload your photo on the UNCW Alumni facebook page and you can get a chance to win a FREE Homecoming 2010

Many will enter- few will win! Entries will be judged on creativity, individuality and the ability to truly showcase Seahawk Spirit! Contest ends Thursday, January 28. Winners will receive prizes at the All Alumni Celebration during Homecoming.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Cameron School of Business Alumni staying connected

Are you a finance major or maybe received a marketing degree? How about international business? Either way, you understand the impact the UNCW Cameron School of Business has made on your life. As an alumni you can help support current students and other alumni with your experiences and professional guidance. How can you do this? Take a look at the CSB Alumni Chapter and you'll find the Homecoming CSB Alumni breakfast, alumni awards, Business Week and many other ways you can get involved and impact others the way you have been.

Know an alum who has achieved honor and distinction within either their professional or personal lives? Be sure to nominate them for CSB Alumni of the Year! The deadline is just around the corner, nominations are due by January 26.

Other great ways to keep in touch with fellow CSB alumni are on the LinkedIn group and the CSB Facebook Page. Share job opportunities, networking socials, photos and more! Your engagement goes a long way in the school's mission to continue as a leading educator in global business!