Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Celebrating Teal Memories & Seahawk Joy

As we bring another year to a close, we'd like to celebrate memories created in 2011. Thank you Seahawks for making each experience a delight! We look forward to what's ahead in 2012!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

UNCW Students Thankful for the Generosity of Alumni

It might not seem like Candice Miller from Kannapolis, NC and Tse-Lynn Loh from Malaysia have much in common, but both of their lives have been changed by UNCW alumni. They have each been awarded scholarships to help excel in their studies while lightening the financial burdens of attending a university.

Candice Miller, graduating December 2013, is studying Business Administration and has been awarded the John & Constance K. Phillips Scholarship. Otherwise unable to afford her education with the expenses of raising three children, this scholarship allows her to pursue her own dreams of earning a college degree as well as “helping my family’s dreams come true,” she says. Candice has decided to make Wilmington her family’s home after falling in love with the town. She chose to complete her education at UNCW after hearing from friends that the professors are unlike any other. Different from larger schools where students tend to feel like a number, UNCW prides itself on the tight-knit community feel between the faculty, staff, and students.

Aquarius is owned by the NOAA and operated by UNCW
Tse-Lynn, class of 2012, is from Kuala Lumpur, the capital city of Malaysia. She came to UNCW to study Marine Biology. Awarded the Perry Daniel Lockamy, Jr. Memorial Scholarship, Tse-Lynn has just completed a mission to Aquarius, the world’s only underwater research laboratory off the coast of Key Largo, Florida. Located at a depth of 60 feet, graduate students are sent on a ten-day mission to explore the nearby coral reefs. With a restricted ability to earn income as an international student, affording graduate school can be difficult. “The scholarship money will go towards funding fieldwork for my Ph.D. research, making it possible for me to collect data for two chapters of my thesis,” says Tse-Lynn.

Whether you are from North Carolina or across the globe, achieved a degree in business or marine biology, many UNCW alumni are generously affording students the ability to ease their college expenses and expand the quality of their education. See how you can make a difference in a student’s life like Candice or Tse-Lynn by visiting the Alumni Giving Campaign.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Alumna Shares Passion and Life-Long Connection with UNCW

Few have the love for UNCW that Lolita Bryant '04, '11M does. The love stems from the history of her father and his siblings living and growing up on the land that the stately georgian architecture now rests on. The area was quite different then. It was farm land.

Knowing that this land was once owned by her great-great-grandparents, Lolita’s face lights up when she talks about the university she feels so strongly connected to. Ask her about her education and there’s no mistaking the appreciation and fondness in her voice.

After attending classes at Winston-Salem State University she returned home and began taking classes at UNCW in 1983. She then attended James Sprunt Community College and obtained an Associate Degree in Nursing. Lolita returned to UNCW once the university started offering a bachelor’s degree in her passion, nursing. Stemming from courses she took at John T. Hoggard High School, Lolita’s desire became a reality nearly 30 years ago. She has been comforting, nurturing and guiding soon-to-be mothers as they bring their unborn children into the world since.

Working around her busy schedule, Lolita completed her bachelor’s degree, taking one class at a time, in 2004. She participated in the Senior Sankofa Ceremony just prior to graduation. Finding the event to be a very touching experience, Lolita vowed to attend each one since, and she has. Learning about the African American Graduate Association (AAGA), who co-hosts the event, Lolita quickly became involved as an alumni volunteer and later, as chairperson in 2009.

Appreciative of the encouragement and support she received by the faculty while taking classes, Lolita became interested in teaching as well. In conjunction with working towards her master's degree in the nursing education program, Lolita taught students at the hospital where she works and also the university. "If it's in your heart to do it, go for it. No matter what it takes to do it, keep going. Find those mentors that will help you stay focused and stay positive. Don't give up on your goal and you'll do it," she said.

This past May, she completed her master's degree and is looking forward to how she can  continue to inspire students and stay involved with the university.  "Because I love nursing the way that I do and I was so involved with the university, I would love to have a scholarship and be able to award that to a student," Lolita shared.    

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Alumnus Takes Ownership in His Community and Alma Mater

Jason Wheeler '99, '03M chose to pursue a career in finance not just because he found the subject matter interesting, he also wanted to help others. Learning to appreciate the value of a dollar at a young age while witnessing his parents scrape by, he acknowledged the lack of personal finance education available in the first 12 years of school. He knew that this was an important subject to learn, and he was good at it.

Jason and his wife, Ashley
Two separate, but consequential events presented themselves while Jason was a student. The first was a job posting through which he met his current business partner at Pathfinder Wealth Consulting. Initially working together at a different firm, the two quickly connected and formed the partnership after Jason had completed his MBA. They committed to serving the local community; a philosophy that is at the core of the company's business model.

The second significant event took place when Jason had nearly completed his MBA. He was approached about joining the alumni Board of Directors. As his first volunteer role with the university, Jason recalls, "I received an education in higher education." His guidance and support proved instrumental with the association, helping it to achieve higher levels of alumni engagement.

Jason, as an alumni leader, was selected to participate on the search committee for not only the Alumni Relations Director in 2007, but also the Athletics Director position in 2010 and recently, the search for UNCW's new Chancellor.

"I think there was around 7,000 or 8,000 students at UNCW when I was an undergrad and then nearly 12,000 students when I was finishing my MBA. You're talking about growing the university by a third. I think people appreciate my history. I've seen the university from an alumni perspective and internally as well." Jason refers to his experience not only as a volunteer, but as a member of the adjunct faculty. He has been teaching finance courses at UNCW for the past three years.

Jason attained a new volunteer role, as a member of the Foundation Board, due to his history and experience providing sound guidance to the university.

When speaking with Jason, it's easy to see his passion for UNCW and its students. "Some of the idea of coming to UNCW not knowing anybody and finding myself is, still today, part of my story. Just being on the board itself, speaking up and meeting people has allowed me to succeed in my own personal mission of becoming a larger part of where I live."

No Feat Too Large for Dedicated Alumnus

Showcased as one of the most beautiful alumni facilities in the south, the Wise Alumni House can attribute its grand appeal, in part, to the passion and dedication of a small group of alumni. Donated to the university by Ms. Jessie Hargrave Kenan Wise's grandchildren, the historic mansion had to undergo considerable renovations in order to become the home of the Alumni Association. Renovations so substantial, that the alumni association secured a $400,000 loan to make them possible. For one of the devoted supporters, Jim Stasios '70, this type of commitment was nothing new. 

Jim's history with UNCW includes many of our most memorable achievements, including the day that the university, then Wilmington College, became part of the UNC system. Jim remembers modifying and combining a few car decals to form UNC Wilmington on the back window of his Volkswagen the day he heard the news.

Jim with his wife, Maria
It wasn't long after graduation that Jim first became involved with the Alumni Association. After attending several events, Jim joined the Board of Directors and later served as chairperson. During Jim's time on the alumni board the association developed the UNCW license plate program, supporting student scholarships. It was also during this time that the Wise Alumni House renovation project took place. Efforts to raise funds to retire the note included a home decorators showcase with celebrity Martha Stewart, automobile auctions and "hard hat parties" where donors would sponsor a particular room or structure of the house.

The volunteers celebrated when they had finally collected all the funds to retire the loan, and then again years later when the house achieved it's centennial. "That was a very proud moment for all of us. To have that come about and having the historical marker put out on the front of the house." Jim stated.

Jim has had an impact in many areas at UNCW, and his volunteer roles weren't always singularly focused or consecutive, sometimes he was juggling multiple organizations. "At one time I sort of overlapped, where I was a member of the alumni board, involved with the Seahawk Club board and I was on the Foundation Board." said Jim. Similar to the duration he was involved with the alumni board, he appreciated the experiences with these organizations immensely. "I met a whole other group of people who had involvement with the university, but in a different perspective. I enjoyed that very much."

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

How Lucky We Are to Have Alumni Like You

UNCW boasts more than 53,000 alumni living around the globe. Teachers, nurses, business executives, scientists, lawyers, film makers and entrepreneurs are among those who call themselves Seahawks.

We couldn't be more proud of our alumni and their accomplishments. To hear stories about days on campus and how those experiences have shaped their lives today is fascinating. To feel the empathy and encouragement our alumni have for our newest graduates is inspiring. To see the generosity, time and financial support contributed to the university, benefitting the needs of our students is heartwarming.

We are thankful for all alumni, whether a 1947 graduate from Wilmington College or a former student who received their diploma just last May. In the spirit of the holidays and giving thanks, we would like to take an opportunity to feature some of our alumni all-stars, people who persistently show their Seahawk love and passion for UNCW.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Former UNCW Student Body President Supporting Entire N.C. University System from Nation’s Capital

Bradley Ballou ’06 did not stop his political career in student government. Originally coming to UNCW for the smaller Southern hospitality atmosphere of the university, he has found himself in the hustle and bustle of Washington D.C.

His education and experience as Student Body President and a member of the Board of Trustees, taught him “more about politics and policy than any other prior experience,” said Bradley. To have “studied politics before practicing it has been enormously beneficial to me.”

Upon graduation from UNCW and after receiving his master’s degree in Political Management from George Washington University, Bradley worked for Senator Elizabeth Dole. He served as her scheduler and later an advisor on Energy and Environmental policy. After the 2008 election and end of the campaign, Bradley experienced an especially difficult time finding another job, like other Republicans in Washington D.C. His persistence and experience earned him an opportunity with the American Council of Life Insurers as part of their government relations team for a year following the election. From there Bradley started his current role for the University of North Carolina system.

Currently the Director of Federal Relations for the University of North Carolina, Bradley acts as a lobbyist for all 17 UNC system campuses and as a liaison between the University and Congress as well as all branches of the Federal government.

Bradley enjoys having networking opportunities with other alumni during events in D.C. as well coming back to visit Wilmington. “Living in this concrete jungle, I really miss the fresh sea air,” says Bradley, who goes to the south end of Wrightsville Beach every chance he gets. Visit Bradley and other alumni in the area at the Washington D.C. Area Alumni Reception on December 1 for a chance to welcome Chancellor Gary Miller and Mrs. Georgia Miller to UNCW.

UNCW Alumni Relations/Hannah Miller

Monday, October 24, 2011

UNCW Alumna One of Charlotte's Most Influential Women

Each year since 2009, the Mecklenburg Times names 50 of the most influential women in the Charlotte area. Honorees represent women in business, government, education and the nonprofit fields, and are selected based on professional accomplishments and community involvement. UNCW alumna Shawn King ‘99M, has been a recipient of this award.

Shawn, recently promoted to Sales Vice President at Wastequip in Charlotte, reflects back on her experience through the MBA program at UNCW. “I learned a lot from my classmates on the benefits of having a diversity of viewpoints and skill sets from the team projects we worked on together. The faculty, Dr. Becky Porterfield, Dr. Claude Farrell and Dr. Howard Rockness, always encouraged students to stretch goals and [taught] the benefits of continual learning on the job. “ stated Shawn.

She believes that working in her chosen career prior to and while pursuing her MBA has taught her valuable time management as well as life balance skills. “I encourage people to have a few year’s working experience before pursuing their MBA – it will just mean more to them going through it.” Shawn’s diligence and a referral from Dr. Porterfield and Rick Sears, a member of Cameron’s Executive Advisory Board, earned her a new position at Precision Fabrics in Greensboro, just before graduating. She later moved on to hold two additional director roles at different companies before joining Wastequip in 2009 as the Marketing Vice President.

When Shawn is not traveling for her new position as Sales Vice President or working on local nonprofit projects, she enjoys coming back to Wilmington with her son and spending time on their boat, Blue Magic, on the Bradley Creek Marina.

As evident by the progression of her career and being honored as a woman of influence, Shawn keeps an extensive professional network. “I appreciated the recognition as well as being in the company of other fantastic women here in Charlotte. Many are women I have worked with on local nonprofit projects, have met through the Charlotte Women Executives’ group and others are leaders from whom I learned something new.”

UNCW Alumni Relations/ Kirsten Matz

Friday, October 14, 2011

Alumna with Heart of Teal Excited for UNCW Event in Triad

Julie with her daughter on campus in August.
If you have ever been to Wilmington, NC you have been on I-40. Starting in California, there are hundreds of beautiful stops from coast to coast, but none are as beautiful as the city where I-40 ends: Wilmington. Julie Landen '02 feels that same way. UNCW’s eye candy campus and renowned academic departments stole her heart the fall of 1997.

Her love of the university and passion to stay connected is so strong that Julie is the UNCW Triad Area Chapter President. She works in Greensboro as the Alumni House Manager and Assistant Director of Local Alumni Programming for UNCG. Prior to this position, Julie worked in minor league baseball as a Director of Community Relations.

 As UNCW Triad Area Chapter President she chairs the steering committee, the chapter's group of alumni volunteers, and hosts events such as the Triad Area Chapter Fall Reception, on October 27. Not only is Julie excited about talking to other alumni in the area, but she is also looking forward to welcoming Chancellor Miller and the opportunity to “hear from him what the future holds for UNCW.”

Julie’s favorite part about being the chapter’s president is staying in touch with UNCW and finding out what is happening on campus. Visiting Wilmington every chance she has, that drive on I-40 instantly brings back memories of her college days.

Hannah Miller, UNCW Alumni Relations Intern

Technology Entrepreneur Next CSB Alumni Breakfast Speaker

Shaun Olsen '02 is the owner of Olsen Enterprises, which established its first company, BBXComputers, in 2002. Shaun later created AcoustiCreations, Inc. and Opterex, Inc., Cape Fear businesses focused on network administration, systems integration and product management. In 2009, Shaun won both a Coastal Entrepreneur Award and a UNCW Entrepreneurship Award in the category of technology. Shaun graduated from UNCW with a degree in Business Administration and a concentration in Information Systems.

The Alumni Association selected this dynamic entrepreneur as the 2011 Young Alumnus of the Year due to his successful launch and management of three growing businesses and passion for helping students excel in the Cameron School of Business. As a successful business owner, mentor within the Cameron Executive Network and recipient of numerous entrepreneurship awards, Shaun has quickly become one of the area’s most up-and-coming young professionals.

Shaun will be speaking at the next CSB Alumni Chapter Breakfast on Thursday, October 26. His presentation, "The New Epoch of Technology and Entrepreneurship" is sure to be informational and inspiring. The CSB Alumni Speaker Breakfast series, which started in 2010, has grown in popularity over the last year and is open to both alumni and community members.

Melissa Mackay, UNCW Alumni Relations Intern

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Study Abroad Opportunity Leads to Life of Travel

When he came to UNCW as a transfer student, Adam Matthews ’04 looked forward to attending a university that fit his academic aspirations as well as fulfill his need for an invigorating sea breeze. What he didn’t expect; however, was that an opportunity to study in Europe would spark a momentous desire for experiential learning. “Every waking moment in a foreign country is a learning experience. I now have an insatiable lust for the unknown,” Adam shares.

While he continued his studies as a business student, Adam focused on technology courses knowing this training would empower him to work strategically and become a multipurpose asset to future employers. This mindset paid off, affording him a position with IBM, also working with Lenovo, during one of the largest U.S. acquisitions by a foreign company. During this time, he developed an interest in the Asia and Pacific marketplace and later traveled to Australia to earn his master’s degree.

Adam at Machu Picchu, Peru
Stamps in Adam’s passport reflect times of adventure, such as Interlaken, Switzerland or Queenstown, New Zealand. Thailand was remarkable due in part to its navigation challenges. When asked about the one he enjoyed most: “My favorite country is always the one I haven’t been to yet. I like to focus on where I am going next.”

Recently Adam returned from South Africa and is back home working with the Bank of America headquarters in Charlotte. He’s looking forward to seeing fellow alumni at the Charlotte Area Alumni Fall Dinner at the City Club on November 3. “You have this connection that makes it easy to engage in conversation. I enjoy reminiscing about the memories I have from Wilmington,” he states.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Family & Alumni Weekend 2011 Highlights Video

Alumni and families of current students came to campus to participate in Family & Alumni Weekend on September 23-25. The university hosted nearly 30 events that showcased the UNCW experience, including social gatherings, musical performances, academic discussions, tours and recreation. Alumni attendees included the first students of Wilmington College in 1947 to our most recent 2011 graduates.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Family & Alumni Weekend 2011

Alumni of all ages, family and friends are invited to celebrate the UNCW experience on September 23 & 24! Make plans now to take advantage of hotel discounts and pre-registration benefits!

New for 2011, Wrightsville Beach will be swarming with teal on Saturday, September 24 at the UNCW Alumni Day at the Beach. Pack your blanket and cooler and come join us! Worried about parking? Pre-register to enjoy a convenient trolley ride. Guests will relax on the sand with games, snacks, refreshments and live jams from Sai Collins! Matt Glova '07 shares, "This is going to be one of most popular events of the weekend!  I have attended several alumni events at UNCW since I graduated and this is one that you will not want to miss!".

“I loved my time at UNCW." reflects Matt Hinnant '95. "As an alumnus, I have been jealous of friends from other universities who get together every season for a football game.  Well, now we have our chance!  We don’t have football, but we do have the BEACH! I plan to make this an annual tradition and hope my Seahawk friends will too."

During the weekend's festivities, two special groups will also be honored. On Saturday morning, the Golden Wing Society Reunion will be held for alumni who attended Wilmington College 50 or more years ago. They'll share stories as they savor a delicious brunch and then take part in trolley tours around campus, seeing the newest developments for current UNCW students.

Late in the afternoon, alumni whose families are making UNCW a tradition are invited to the annual Legacy Pinning Ceremony. Those who have a sibling, son, daughter, parent or grandparent who are attending UNCW this fall as a new student will treasure the heartfelt ceremony and opportunity to meet other Seahawk families.

The weekend's activities also include a Music Department Alumni Concert & Reception, Seahawk Athletics, Kayak Tours and more! Take a look at the full schedule and share the news with friends!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Growing with our University, Reflecting on 55 Years of Memories

Each fall during Family & Alumni Weekend, alumni who attended Wilmington College 50 or more years ago are invited back to campus to celebrate at the Golden Wing Society Reunion. During the brunch, alumni share stories and reminisce about days when the university was Wilmington College and held classes in the Isaac Bear building on Market Street. After relaying fond memories, the group enjoys a trolley tour of the campus as it stands today, nearly 650 beautiful acres on College Road.

Bettie Strickland '56 and her husband Tom '57, attended the event last year and look forward to the upcoming reunion in September. While they have such sweet memories of dances in Isaac Bear gym, where Bettie served as Social Chair, and cheering during basketball games with Coach Bill Brooks, the couple is proud of the university's progress. Since their graduation, the university moved and vastly expanded, integrated into the North Carolina state system for higher education, and became UNC Wilmington.

Bettie and Tom, who are Wilmington natives, bought their house in the Myrtle Grove area of Wilmington before the university's renowned Center for Marine Science was in existence. They love touring the neighboring facility almost as much as watching the developments to the main campus.

Reflecting, Bettie states, "...Shorthand and Typing with Dorothy Marshall, Biology with Zebrowski (known to us as Uncle Zeb), English Lit with Catherine Noyes, and also English with Shannon Morton - all played a huge part in giving us the skills we would need in our careers and life and bless us even today!". She used her experience to work as a legal secretary and then with Wachovia. Tom worked in the insurance field, first as a salesman, then manager and later as an instructor.

As they are now both retired, they enjoy attending the monthly Wilmington College luncheon at Jackson's BBQ, cheering on Seahawk athletes in Trask, and watching shows and plays in Kenan Auditorium. Bettie and Tom are excited to reconnect with fellow graduates from the class of 1961 and earlier, at the Golden Wing Society Reunion on September 24.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Bloodlines of Teal, the Seahawk Legacy

UNCW has become a tradition for many families. Sharing teal pride as UNCW imprints its legacy on their family. Each year, the alumni association invites freshmen and transfer students, along with a parent, grandparent or sibling who attended UNCW, to join us for the Legacy Pinning Ceremony to celebrate generations of Seahawks.

Among those we honored last year, Susan and Rachel Smyer have a twist on the traditional legacy. Rachel was able to experience the honor of pinning her mother, Susan, as her academic legacy. "I am her biological legacy. So getting to pin her as my academic legacy was an honor. She has always been there for me, no matter what and getting to honor her this way was a big deal not just for the two of us, but for the rest of our family as well."

Rachel Smyer '07 came to UNCW as a transfer student after attending community college. Like many students, she instantly fell in love with the university on her first visit. Rachel graduated with a degree in Communication Studies and now works with the Cape Fear Museum. "UNCW has been good to me, and I feel that it has helped me to grow monumentally as a person. Because of my experiences at UNCW I have learned to trust in my abilities. I studied abroad in Swansea, Wales and I am contemplating getting my Masters Degree in English at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland."

Soon after Rachel began classes, her mother, Susan, made the decision to extend her education and attend UNCW as well. "It took me 35 years to get from New Bern Senior High School to UNCW, but I got here." Through her professors and classmates, she learned that it is never too late to go back to school.  “I learned that knowledge is fun and began to see things from a different point of view.” In 2010, Susan graduated with a Bachelors of Arts in Communication Studies and has plans to work towards a master's degree in Liberal Studies.

The mother and daughter team enjoy visiting campus to watch movies at Lumina Theatre, having coffee with friends in Randall Library and attending alumni events to meet new people. Rachel adds, "Even though I have graduated, I still feel a part of the UNCW family.".

Monday, August 8, 2011

UNCW Alumni Saving Lives - One Organ at a Time

Ginger with the donation recipient.
Ginger DeLario '92 has had an opportunity not many of us experience; she saved a man's life. She had never met this man before, but could give him the one thing he needed to get his life back, a kidney.

Working at Carolina Donor Services (CDS) as the Clinical Education Coordinator, Ginger witnesses true human kindness everyday. "People face the worst tragedy of their lives, yet they are able to see past their pain and donate life to another human being in need. It is truly remarkable." With more than 111,000 people waiting for a transplant across the nation and 3,500 of them right here in North Carolina, the organization's plight is not an easy one.

Ginger was first employed by CDS as a Preservation Coordinator, working long hours and flying all over the country at a moment's notice. She later became an Organ Donation Coordinator who stays on-site at the hospital to medically manage donors and coordinate recovery. In her current role, she oversees employee training and continuing education.

A love for science brought Ginger to UNCW in 1988 to attain a degree in Biology. From there she went to graduate school at Duke University for Clinical Laboratory Science and later received her PhD from American University. "It's funny, when people ask me where I went to school, I always answer UNCW! My husband is perplexed why I don't say Duke or American, but he just doesn't understand... once a Seahawk, always a Seahawk! I still bleed teal after all these years."

Dawn Hall
A colleague at CDS, Dawn Hall '93, echos Ginger's sentiment to our coastal university. "I learned many life lessons from my four years on campus but one that rises to the top is not to take each day for granted." Dawn, who received her degree in English and Teacher Certification from UNCW, believes, "Each position I've held readied me to make the next step that led me to where I am right now. I'm inspired by the gift of life every single day and I'm so thankful that my professional journey led me to do the work I do.".

Working as the Director of Communications and Marketing, Dawn emphasizes the ability of donors to make a lasting impact through the precious gift of donation. "One organ donor can save up to eight lives and a single tissue donor can save or improve the quality of life for up to 50 people. The work we do is truly rewarding. [Donor's families] have told me so many times that donation was the one bright light in an otherwise dismal time in their lives. Knowing their loved one's legacy lives on gives them comfort."

Monday, August 1, 2011

UNCW Embraces New Leadership for the Alumni Association

The UNCW Alumni Association Board of Directors is an elected group of volunteers that help guide and advise the association. Their goal is to engage alumni in the life of our university.

Sandra with former AAGA President,
Lolita Bryant '04, '11M
We are proud to welcome the new leadership for the 2011-2012 fiscal year. Chair, Sandra McClammy '03, '09M, works as an on-air personality for Cumulus Broadcasting, recently taught at UNCW and is now an English Professor at Cape Fear Community College.  Vice Chair, Wallace West '63, is the owner and CEO of Coastal Carolina Streetscapes, LLC. Secretary, Lauren Scott '06, '10M, works at UNCW as the Assistant Director for First Year Admissions. Treasurer,  Jody Burke '85, is a Financial advisor and First Vice President- Investments for Wells Fargo.

Jody with Chelsea McNeil at
UNCW's Campaign Public Launch event

Julie and her husband, Chad, at
the Triad Chapter Fall Dinner
Another key component to the association is chapter and alumni group leadership. These leaders play a major role in keeping alumni informed and connected to others in their respective region or areas of study. The new chapter leaders are: Charlotte Area Alumni President, Robert Abbotts '85; Triad Area Alumni President, Julie Patterson Landon '02; Cape Fear Area Alumni President, Chrissy Coor '01; Cameron School of Business Chapter President, Kevin Fanning '02; and African American Graduate Association (AAGA) President, Linda Rawley '86. To see all the chapter leaders and other members of the board, take a look at the full alumni board list.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

UNCW Alumni Website Goes Mobile!

Now you can check out the latest alumni news and events from your smartphone! The new UNCW mobile website, designed by local marketing and technology gurus, Blu Zeus, is the perfect way to stay on top of what's in store for alumni- without needing a computer!

The new site features an events calendar, alumni chapter information, local and national benefits, a campus map and an easy-as-pie way to update your contact information! Check it out by navigating to www.uncw.edu/alumni on your mobile phone.  

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Get Ready for the Durham Bulls Picnic on July 8!

The UNCW Triangle Area Alumni Chapter will host the annual Durham Bulls Picnic on Friday, July 8. Tickets are now available online until July 4. See you at the ball park!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Share Your Memories for the Alumni Beach Day Video!

Johnnie Mercer's Pier, MOI, Surfing Before Class, K-38, 4-wheelin', Friends with Beach Houses, Fishing on the South End Jetty, .....Your Story Goes Here!.... Crystal Pier, Mad Monk, Blockade Runner, The Crest, Catching rays behind the Dunes, Studying late at Pizza Hut on WB....

On UNCW's campus you worked hard, chatted with professors and helped remind your roommates to get to class on time (or they were the ones reminding you!). What about during your downtime? Days without classes and breaks between semesters?

We want to hear about your memories on the southeastern NC coast! What was your favorite hang-out? Where did you always bring out of town friends when they came to visit? When school had you stressed where would you go to unwind?
Post your favorite photos and videos on the Alumni Facebook Page by July 8 for a chance to be included in the Video!!

Share this with friends and to see what old photos they can dig up too!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Alumni Make a Difference in Preparing Students for Success

While UNCW has many alumni who move around the globe after they graduate, a lucky few work right here at the university. One in particular, works hard to ensure that our current students have an unforgettable experience and all the tools they need to prepare for success after graduation.

Missy Kennedy  ’01, is UNCW’s Director of Annual Giving. She achieved a position at the university after working for the House of Blues in Myrtle Beach as the Promotions Manager and excelling in her marketing career.

Reflecting on her years as a student she recalls, “The time I spent at UNCW was transformational. My professors were mentors who made course work relevant to our lives, to pop culture and to the working world – preparing us for our future”. A Communication Studies major, she was also involved in ACE (the Association for Campus Entertainment) where her love for music became as varied as the diverse group of student leaders she worked with.  

Missy also joined Alpha Phi sorority, becoming part of a special legacy of young women who are committed to scholarship, service and friendship. “I have shared some of life’s most special moments with these women… vacations, weddings, births and more.”

Now back at the university that gave her so much, she wonders if fellow alumni understand the impact they can make. “I am just one of 57,000 alumni whose life has been influenced by UNCW; yet I am only one of 3,235 alumni who have made a gift to UNCW this year. I have no doubt that most alumni feel the same way I do about UNCW. I see their Seahawk license plates or their “Dub” t-shirts. I cheer alongside them at Trask Coliseum and have drinks with them at alumni socials. I see their posts on the UNCW Alumni facebook page and read their stories in the alumni magazine. As a proud alumna, I know that there’s no better way to show my support for my alma mater than to make an annual gift. As the Director of Annual Giving, I’ve seen just how critical that support is for today’s students. Imagine the possibilities and resources that could be made available for today’s Seahawks if more UNCW alumni joined me in this tradition of giving.”

Reflect on your own UNCW memories and challenge yourself to think how the university is helping you reach your highest potential. Find out how your annual gift can provide funding for scholarships, academic programs, cultural activities, technology upgrades, professorships, and opportunities that foster friendships, develop leaders, change perspectives and inspire greatness.

Alumni can trace so many important achievements in their lives, both personal and professional to their time at UNCW. Give back to be that support for our next generation of Seahawks.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Accepting Nominations for J. Marshall Crews Award until August 1

The Alumni Association is now accepting nominations for the J. Marshall Crews Distinguished Faculty Award.  This award, named for Dr. J. Marshall Crews, honors a faculty member who exhibits the qualities of service and leadership that Dr. Crews personified throughout his life.  During his 33 year career at Wilmington College and UNCW, Dr. Crews held the following positions; Mathematics Professor, Registrar, Academic Dean, Director of Admissions and Dean of Students.  Additionally, Crews is the author of From These Beginnings, a history of Wilmington College from 1947 to 1969.  Dr. Crew passed away in April 2010.

This Award is based on the following criteria:
Student Support Effort
Leadership Roles
Community Service and Outreach Efforts

Nominations may be submitted by any faculty or staff member, alumnus, student or community member by August 1, 2011. Submit the online form and a letter of recommendation illustrating how the nominee exhibits the criteria outlined above to Kim Gargiulo at gargiulok@uncw.edu or mail to:  Kim Gargiulo, Wise Alumni House, 1713 Market Street, Wilmington, NC 28403, Campus Mail Box:  5906.

The award recipient will be presented with a $500 stipend at the Fall Faculty Meeting on September 1, 2011. DEADLINE FOR NOMINATION IS August 1, 2011.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011


Kindergarteners at nearby College Park Elementary School recently raced to good health with help and inspiration from their teacher, former UNCW swimming and diving standout Melissa Milstead.

Milstead, the Colonial Athletic Association’s Swimming and Diving Scholar Athlete-of-the-Year for two straight years in 2006 and 2007, encouraged her class to exercise by running for two years in a row.

Last year, Milstead’s first grade class ran a 26.2-mile marathon and this year, her kindergarteners have done the same. Milstead’s class of five and six-year-olds started their marathon in January and kept count of their laps around the track until they reached the distance of a full marathon.

“If you ask them, they’ll tell you ‘I’m exercising my heart,’” said Milstead of her kindergarten class. “They even ask to run laps.”

Milstead, who has run competitively in marathons and tackled triathlons, was also the recipient of the school’s Chancellor’s Cup Award for Academic Excellence following her senior year at UNCW.

“She’s having a tremendous influence on the lives of her students and enabling them to feel good about themselves,” said UNCW Head Swimming and Diving Coach Dave Allen of his former student-athlete. “She’s giving them a head start on learning a healthy lifestyle, which can carry them through the rest of their lives.”

The College Park Elementary students even helped pass out medals to this year’s 2011 Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon winners. In fact, Milstead’s class received identical medals to reward them on completion of their own marathon.

Milstead was excited to get her class involved and was proud to watch her students complete their goal for the second year in a row.

“Doing this is really great because it gets them excited about exercising and having a healthy lifestyle, while promoting cooperation and support for one another.”

Submitted by UNCW Athletics Intern, Erin Hamil

Friday, April 29, 2011

Alumni Welcome Largest Class to Graduate from UNCW

As students across campus spend hours preparing for final exams, 2,100 of our Seahawks are only steps away from an achievement of a lifetime—college graduation. Four departmental commencement ceremonies, honoring more than 1,800 undergraduate students and nearly 300 graduate students, will be held on Friday and Saturday, May 13 and 14 in Trask Coliseum. For graduates that are interested in purchasing a keepsake of their ceremony, DVDs are available from the alumni office.

The Alumni Association will be starting off this exciting weekend by hosting a Commencement Celebration at the Wise Alumni House on Thursday, May 12. The graduates, along with family and friends, are invited to enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres and tour the historic mansion while getting to know Alumni Association Board Members.

We are proud to welcome the Class of 2011 as they join the ranks of over 57,000 UNCW alumni and look forward to seeing each of these new faces at upcoming events!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Young Alumnae See No Limits, Open Cupcake Store and Start Local Adventure Race

What's the connection between delicious cupcakes and the addictive sport of adventure racing? Well, there's actually two- Kristen Beckmeyer '01 and Meredith Sullivan '01. The Cameron School of Business graduates opened their first cupcake store, Coastal Cupcakes in downtown Wilmington in July, 2008. Fueled by its success, a second store opened in Wrightsville Beach in May, 2009. Now, ready to take on more of the local action, the pair teamed up with fellow alumnus, Jason Wheeler '99, '03M, to form the Sandman Adventure Race.

Much like when they realized that Wilmington had a shortage of designer, quality-made cupcakes, the women saw a gap in the market and started the local "sprint" race. "Many of our friends were interested in doing an adventure race but were intimidated by the 8-12 hour races that we compete in," explained Kristen.

The pair has their share of experience on and off the field. Kristen worked for the Wilmington Hammerheads, while Meredith was on the UNCW Cross Country and Track & Field teams and held an internship with both Seahawk Athletics and the Boston Celtics.

While the two stay focused on their business, Kristen agrees with Meredith about the importance of networking. "My time at UNCW was a great foundation but the university has become an even more valuable resource for us since graduating," she stated.

They continue to be members of the Seahawk Club and enjoy watching games on campus. Staying connected with the business school, they are mentors and share their journey to becoming business owners with current students.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Alumna Manages National Marketing Firm and Big Name Accounts From the Port City

"We all have limited time and limited energy - put yours where it matters most." This lesson that Trudy Maus '91, '97M learned from one of her business courses at UNCW has made a big impact on her career. Using a cost-benefit comparison when faced with decisions and tasks has led Trudy to become a co-owner of BannerDirect, a New York City based marketing agency.

When Trudy reflects back on why she decided to attend UNCW she states, "I wanted my professors to know my name - I didn't want to be just a number. I researched several "smaller" universities in North Carolina and toured a few campuses. When I arrived at UNCW, I immediately fell in love."

Starting as a Psychology major, then switching to Mathematics and later Finance, Trudy realized her passion lies in Marketing after taking a required course. "It combined all the majors I was considering... Psychology (what makes consumers tick), Mathematics and Finance (sales/budgets/ROI)." Shortly after receiving her undergraduate degree, she began working with BannerDirect, out of their Wilmington office. "It was the best of both worlds - I worked on large accounts in New York City, while being able to stay in Wilmington."

When addressing challenges in her field Trudy states, "Marketing agency work involves long hours, tight deadlines and a lot of travel. It gets the adrenaline going, but you need to be prepared to re-schedule vacations and spend Christmas Eve snowed in at the airport. Flexibility is key to surviving and thriving in marketing."

Trudy enjoys coming back to campus to see its growth while still maintaining the "most beautiful campus in North Carolina". She's actively involved on the Alumni Board of Directors and encourages others to stay engaged with the university. "UNCW gave me a great education in which to build my career. I enjoy seeing this impact on future graduates."

Friday, March 11, 2011

Recent Graduate Works to Help Create Local Jobs, Enhance K-12 Education and Foster an Entrepreneurial Environment

Fresh out of labs and study sessions, Sallie Smyth '08, '10M who received her MPA from UNCW last May, is putting her knowledge to good use for our region. As program coordinator for Cape Fear Future, Sallie describes it as a natural fit, "Cape Fear Future is about job creation, business and employee retention, K-12 education enhancement, quality of life, and fostering an entrepreneurial environment. I collaborate with local, state, and federal government, the private sector, the community, tri-county school systems and other nonprofits. My education integrated these different sectors into our studies because when it comes to policy, management, and economic development, all these components come together and play a part."

Sallie came to UNCW to study political science. By the second week of classes she had attended her first City Council meeting and made plans to buy a home in Wilmington. Working on campus and also interning with the City of Wilmington, she admittedly developed a, "lifetime commitment to a community I have fallen in love with".

Sallie deems networking as one of the things she learned at UNCW that has most benefitted the start of her career. She continues to grow her networks at events hosted by UNCW's Entrepreneurship Center. "The director, Jonathan Rowe Ph.D, hosts multiple events for young entrepreneurs and business students. It’s great to get out there and see their youthfulness, enthusiasm and hard work rolled into a professional business model." Another way she enjoys staying connected to UNCW is by, "going back  to Leutze Hall and visiting with my professors—they really helped shape me as a person and have continued to reach out during my post-graduate career. I cannot thank them enough for their ongoing support and guidance."

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Business Executive and Civic Leader Shares Insight on How We Can Impact Our Local Economy

Vice president at John S. Clark Co., Livian Jones '95M, believes in giving back to her community. The Charlotte native earned a criminal justice and pre-law degree from Appalachian State University before moving to Wilmington to complete an MBA from UNCW. Livian has been in the construction and engineering industry for more than 20 years and stays actively involved in numerous community and civic organizations.

Alumni and members of the community will have an opportunity to hear Livian present on our individual impact on local economic development at the next CSB Alumni Chapter Speaker Breakfast on April 7. Guests will enjoy a networking breakfast before the presentation in the Burney Center on UNCW's campus. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased online prior to April 3.

Livian has stayed connected with UNCW as a former member of the Alumni Association Board of Directors and the Foundation Board. Locally she has helped lead two "Women's Build" Habitat Houses, served as a commissioner on the Wilmington Housing Authority and on the commissioning committee of both the SSN North Carolina Submarine and USS Gravely Destroyer. In addition to serving on many local organizations' board of directors, such as the Greater Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, Child Advocacy (CAPP), and the Cape Fear Council Boy Scouts, she founded and operates her own non-profit, Furniture Finders, which provides basic furnishings for underprivileged families. 

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Announcing the 2011 CSB Outstanding Alumni of the Year

Business Week is an exciting and informational annual event hosted by UNCW’s Cameron School of Business. One of the most significant aspects of the week is the Alumni & Retired Faculty Mixer on Tuesday, March 1st at 5:30 pm in the CIS Lobby. The mixer will include complimentary food and drinks while guests network and celebrate the 2011 CSB Outstanding Alumni of the Year honorees.

The 2011 recipients are Donis Noe Smith '86, '94M; Gareth Montague-Smith '96, '97M; and Judy R. Tharp '78. Each one has been chosen because of their successes following graduation from UNCW.

Donis Noe Smith has been a wealth advisor with Morgan Stanley Smith Barney for 15 years. She graduated from UNCW in 1986 with a B.S. in marketing and then received her MBA from UNCW in 1994. Donis earned the Certified Financial PlannerTM Practitioner designation in 2003 and Morgan Stanley’s Wealth Advisor designation in 2007. Donis is a member of the New Hanover County Estate Planning Council and the Investors Roundtable of Wilmington. Donis is a past chair of the UNCW Alumni Association Board of Directors and also served on the CSB Alumni Chapter Board of Directors. She currently mentors business students as a member of the Cameron Executive Network.

Gareth Montague-Smith is an Audit Senior Manager with KPMG’s Raleigh, NC office. Gareth joined KPMG in September 1997, after completing an undergraduate degree and Masters of Science in Accounting in 1997. Gareth spent 11 years with KPMG in Raleigh working on some of the firms largest global public and non-public companies. More recently, he was nominated to spend two years working in one of KPMG’s national offices. Gareth is a CPA in both North Carolina and New Jersey and holds membership in the UNCW Accounting & Business Law/Master of Science in Accounting Advisory Board, the American Institute of CPA's, the New Jersey Society of CPA's, the North Carolina Association of CPA's, the North Carolina Association of CPA's Accounting and Attestation Board, and is a board member of Be Active NC.

Judy Tharp's career in credit unions began in Wilmington in 1979 after her graduation from UNCW in 1978. She started Cape Fear Employees' Credit Union, for the employees of the E.I. duPont deNemours plant. Judy served as the first President/CEO of the credit union until 1994. In the years since, she has served in executive positions for two credit unions in South Carolina. Additionally, she served as an officer of CUNA Mutual Group, a national multi-billion dollar financial products and insurance company, where she oversaw lending strategy and solution development for the company. Judy has been very active in the Credit Union Executive Society, the NC Credit Union League, First Carolina Corporate Credit Union and Credit Union National Association. Currently, she serves as Vice-Chair of the Carolinas Credit Union Foundation, and serves on the Board of the Carolinas Credit Union Service Corporation. Judy was voted North Carolina’s ‘Credit Union Person of the Year’ in 1994 and is currently the President/CEO of Piedmont Advantage Credit Union.

To meet these outstanding alumni, register for the mixer online at www.uncw.edu/csbtix.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

UNCW’s Cameron School of Business Hosts 29th Annual Business Week

It’s that time again! UNCW’s Cameron School of Business holds the 29th annual Business Week. Alumni are invited to take part in events on March 1st and 2nd. The highlight of the week is the Alumni and Retired Faculty Mixer on Tuesday, March 1 at 5:30pm in the Computer Information Systems lobby. This event will be lots of fun and a great opportunity for alumni to catch up with former CSB friends and professors! The night will also include the presentation of the 2011 Outstanding Business Alumni of the Year awards.

The week-long event features a bevy of speakers who have experience in the fields of business, finance, marketing, entrepreneurship, information technologies, and more. As a current student, majoring in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing,  I have come to realize the importance of Business Week. My classmates and I will be given the opportunity to learn about many facets of the business world and all that we have to look forward to. My time in the Cameron School of Business has been tremendously positive and I look to Business Week as another insightful experience that will aid and carry me into my future.

When I asked Meghan MacDonald ‘09  how she felt about being one of this year's speakers, she responded with, "Business Week is a great opportunity for the community and the university. As a student I was able to attend seminars that were of interest to my career path, be a student host, and foster relationships that continue to be an important part of my life today. As an alumna of the business school and participant of business week, I hope to be able to assist and guide students as other business leaders did for me."

Kristen Beckmeyer ’01, former CSB student and owner of Coastal Cupcakes, puts it nicely, “I first spoke at Business Week in 2009 and really enjoyed getting back on campus and interacting with the students. It was amazing to see how things have changed since I was a student. One of the great things about living in Wilmington is the ability to get and stay involved with UNCW. Giving back to your alma mater isn't just about writing a check. Sometimes your time and experience means the most."

- Krista Little, Business Student & Alumni Relations Intern

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Celebrate the history of the UNCW Crew Club!

To a former UNCW Crew Club member not many things sound quite as appealing as being back in the waters of Wilmington. Climbing into your boats and slicing through the picturesque Cape Fear River brings feelings of nostalgia. On February 26, crew club alumni will gather in Wilmington for their annual reunion.

To truly understand the significance of this club we found pieces of the club's history in the Randall Library Archives. The earliest mention of the team is from 1969. Professor John Anderson, with the help of Bob Walton, formed and coached a team that first raced for the Feast of the Pirates celebration at Wrightsville beach in May of 1970. In this first race they went up against UNC-Chapel Hill and The Citadel.

They gained support and equipment through congressman Alton A. Lennon, who managed to obtain military-school cast-offs for the team to practice with. The team participated in their first intercollegiate match in 1976 against UNC-Chapel Hill and achieved victory. Throughout the 1970's, the team participated in the Azalea Festival Regatta under the guidance of their coach Professor Anderson.

In 1986, the application was filed and approved for the official formation of the UNCW Crew Club under the leadership of club President Ted Uhlman. From there the club continued on to 25 years of fun and hard work in the waters of Wilmington, carrying on a rich legacy of rowing at UNCW.

UNCW welcomes former crew members back for a day of rowing, reminiscing, food, and old friends during the annual Crew Club Reunion on February 26. The day will begin with the annual Fun Row at the Wilmington Marine Center. The group will then head to lunch and later reconvene at the Wise Alumni House for dinner and celebration.

Friday, February 4, 2011

1986 Class President excited for return to UNCW at 25 Year Reunion

When Tim Dellinger ’86 was growing up in Durham, NC in the early 1980’s he knew that he wanted to go to college at the beach. What he found upon his arrival at UNCW was so much more. He found a world of learning, both academically and personally, that made him the man he is today. The close knit community of Galloway Hall was a place where he made lifelong friendships that helped him to realize that “there was a lot more going on in the world than what I had previously imagined.”

During his time at UNCW, Tim says that with the help of his friends, advisors and professors he grew up. He was elected and served as Senior Class President in 1986 where he learned that “surrounding yourself with great people helps you make the right decisions” and has carried that with him throughout his life.

Today Tim lives in Durham, NC with his wife Jeanne and their three children and is the President of Advantage Newspaper Consultants. His company is a full service marketing firm that works with both independent publishers and major newspapers across the country.

Tim and his family often return to their beach condo in Wrightsville Beach and are looking forward to coming back to UNCW for Homecoming. On Saturday, February 19, 2011, the UNCW Alumni Association will host numerous events for alumni to enjoy. He plans to attend the Cameron School of Business Alumni Breakfast and see how the program has changed. He has fond memories of his entrepreneurship classes with Dr. Harper and hopes to catch up with him and other professors when he is back on campus.

In anticipation of the 25 Year Reunion for the Class of 1986, during the Alumni Homecoming Celebration, Tim stated, "Homecoming 2011 is more than just the chance to see all of the changes at UNCW.  It is more than just a time to visit old haunts and hangouts. (This) Homecoming is a milestone opportunity to reconnect with old friends, and together remember the fun, the excitement, the activities of being a Seahawk during (our) college years, and explore how UNCW has defined us over the past 25 years."

Join Tim and fellow Seahawks for the Homecoming festivities and register today!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Explore the New Nursing Building during Homecoming

Photo Credit: UNCW/Jamie Moncrief
When strolling down Chancellor’s Walk, it’s hard not to notice the structure in the area that, not too long ago, was a parking lot. Standing in the shadows of this state-of-the-art building, UNCW students, faculty, staff, and visitors gaze in awe of the new resources available to UNCW students.

Not only does the architecture match the Georgian style seen on UNCW’s campus, but the new facility accommodates a larger number of faculty and students. Multiple resources include classrooms and offices, eight simulation labs, a large lecture hall, and distance learning, providing for all needs under one roof.

Photo Credit: UNCW/Jamie Moncrief
Currently, UNCW nursing students have the opportunity to work with mannequins in areas such as critical care, maternal/infant care, and pediatrics, but before Fall 2010, their lab was only about 1,000 square feet. Due to the expansion of lab space in the new building, students now have approximately 10,000 square feet of work space to check vital signs, diagnose medical conditions, and participate in simulation childbirth. Sarah Keys, a senior majoring in nursing explains, “The eight different simulation rooms allow for hands on learning and lots of practice in a safe controlled environment before going out into the clinical setting. Each semester we spend many hours in the labs learning and practicing skills.”

There are also plans to use this state-of-the-art workspace for partnerships with groups such as hospitals, disaster response, diving programs, pharmaceutical, high school enrichment programs and many others.

Alumni are invited to enjoy the new addition to the UNCW campus during Homecoming 2011. On Saturday, February 19, all School of Nursing Alumni are invited to a complimentary reunion breakfast in the new Nursing Building for an opportunity to reconnect with each other, past professors and to tour the building. Additionally, all alumni and friends of UNCW are encouraged to participate in the “Tealin’ Like a Student: Soaring Back to School!” event that will take place later that day for a guided tour and to observe the simulation labs in action. The program will give attendees the opportunity to experience what it’s like to be a current UNCW student.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Seahawk makes an impact on Wrightsville Beach and across the nation

Think you found a great spot to lay your towel on the beach just to realize that there’s trash peeking out from the sand and shells? Do you just keep walking, ignoring the fact that what was only a nuisance to you is actually a hazard to animals and wildlife on our beaches? Danielle Richardet ‘01, has begun an awareness campaign on the effects of trash, focusing on cigarette butts. Her efforts achieved national recognition and she won the Brita FilterforGood Film Project qualifying for a film to be created and screened during the Sundance Film Festival at the Brita FilterForGood Event.

While at UNCW, Danielle took interest in becoming an avid recycler. During a visit to long-time friend and past college roommate, Danielle and her family met Sara Bayles of “The Daily Ocean Blog”. While on the beach in Santa Monica, Danielle noticed that all of the trashcans had a photo of a palm tree, surf board, and cigarette with the words, “One of these don’t belong here.” Instantly, Danielle was inspired to return home and help clean up Wrightsville Beach.

Beginning August 9, 2010 Danielle, along with her husband and three young children, started taking 20 minute trips to pick up cigarette butts and other trash along various accesses on Wrightsville Beach. Her blog, “It Starts with Me”, reflects the cigarette count and weight of the litter collected each day. Since August, friends and community members have also helped Danielle collect 13,771 cigarette butts in just 39 days from the beach. In her blog, Danielle writes,"... it doesn't really matter whether or not we live at the beach. We go to the beach to be in the ocean... play in the sand... bask in the sun... there's certainly no reason why we (or anyone else) shouldn't want to head out to the beach and make a difference in a place we LOVE so much.”

Danielle is a devoted Seahawk who truly loves our community and beaches. She encourages everyone to do what they can to make a difference, “It’s simple…what we do (or don’t do) has an impact on the world we live in. It starts with me and ripples to you…”

Friday, January 21, 2011

2011 Alumni Award Recipients Announced

The Alumni Association is excited to announce the recipients of the 2011 Alumni Awards. Each of the honorees showcase their Seahawk spirit with fellow alumni, friends and in the communities they live.

Malcomb Coley ’86, ‘89M is the 2011 UNCW Distinguished Alumnus Award recipient. Currently, a CPA and partner with Atlanta’s Ernst & Young, Coley earned his degrees in the Cameron School of Business. In addition to being an active member of many professional accounting and diversity organizations, Coley is a featured speaker during UNCW Business Week and MSA classes. We are pleased to recognize such an active individual, willing to give time and resources back to his alma mater.

Also a Cameron School of Business graduate, Shaun Olsen ‘02, will be awarded the Young Alumnus of the Year Award. Immediately after graduation, he began Olsen Enterprises and has since added 3 companies to the mix. BBXComputers was his first company offering sales, design and IT structure consulting. Two years later AcoustiCreations, Inc. was formed, specializing in home theater installations. Olsen also created Opterex an advanced technology and communications services firm. At UNCW, Olsen is a member of the Center for Entrepreneurial Development and the Cameron Exectuive Network, and currently mentoring two business students.

Charles Edward Alexander III is the recipient of the Distinguished Citizen of the Year Award. Alexander is currently the Vice Chair for UNCW Foundation Board of Directors, as well as serving on the Endowment Board and Cameron School of Business Committee. In the community, Alexander served on the Board of Directors for Cameron Art Museum and the NC Museum of Art Grand Opening Committee. Alexander worked in Raleigh as the Senior Vice President of Morgan Stanley and is now retired.

These three outstanding individuals have demonstrated character, professionalism and a devotion to UNCW. They will receive their awards during Homecoming 2011 and will be honored during the parade and Men’s Basketball game on Saturday, February 19.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

UNCW Homecoming 2011- only 29 days away!

With Homecoming 2011 right around the corner the alumni staff and volunteers couldn't be more excited to get together with our alumni friends. This year, we're bringing back all your favorites and even added more events to welcome alumni and friends to UNCW's campus. You can find details and how to register on the Homecoming website.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Seahawk Hero: Ray Buchanan '72

“Living simply so that others could simply live,” are the words by which one philanthropic Seahawk alumnus lives. Ray Buchanan ’72 has set out to do what many have dreamed of but few have ever thought possible: end world hunger. A Texas native, Buchanan was based at Camp Lejune upon joining the Marine Corps and began his undergraduate degree in Philosophy and Religion at UNCW following completion of his service. During these years of service and as an undergrad, Buchanan realized his passion for religion and helping others and went on to Duke Divinity School, then Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest.

Ray Buchanan’s vision to provide international help in the form of nutrition quickly evolved into reality when he partnered with John Hewitt in 1998 to form Stop Hunger Now. The organization has provided over 34 million meals and $70 million in direct aid to the hungry in 72 different countries around the world.

Over 90% of the food has gone to school meals programs, which Buchanan views as a way of tackling some of the most pressing third world issues. He believes that if needy children are being fed, then their parents will send them to school, increasing enrollment. The resulting educated population will provide a better equipped workforce and will be more knowledgeable about health issues, decreasing birthrates and the spread of infectious disease.

Million Meals Packaging Event in Trask
Most recently, Stop Hunger Now has orchestrated the Million Meals Event where volunteer groups gather at universities across to country to pack meals. UNCW rallied up 450 volunteers to participate in this event on Saturday, August 29, 2010 in Trask Coliseum to package meals to be shipped to schools in Haiti, Kenya, and Nicaragua. A second packaging event took place in Hanover Hall on November 13, 2010, resulting in 140,000 meals ready to be shipped across the world.

Ray Buchanan believes that hunger will no longer be an issue in this lifetime if we all join together to donate time and resources to those less fortunate. We, at UNCW, are proud to call him a Seahawk and believe that those dreams can be achieved.