YAAC Takes on Important ASN Issues

Posted in: Alpha Sigma Nu

The Young Alumni Advisory Council (YAAC) has been meeting virtually since its inception in March 2020. An example of connecting in innovative ways, this group consists of members on multiple continents who meet quarterly to tackle some of ASN's most important issues.

The Council is led by Morgan Menzzasalma (Fordham `18) and Joshua Madrid (Regis U `16). YAAC meetings are led by Morgan and Josh, who guide the discussions and propose any necessary sub-groups to continue the conversation after the official meeting. From these 90-minute meetings, as well as the follow-up sub-group work, the YAAC develops concrete proposals that they present at the monthly ASN Board of Directors meetings. We asked Morgan and Josh to share an update on their work so far.

By Morgan Menzzasalma and Joshua Madrid

Since our inaugural meeting, YAAC has produced three proposals that have been adopted by the ASN Board of Directors. Additionally, the Council has submitted joint statements offering our perspective over how ASN chapters are managed and made suggestions to help ASN be more successful on each campus.  We are excited to see these new proposals materialize and hope they will yield a more meaningful experience for current students and alumni members.

Discernment Day - It is our hope that a new Discernment Day program will foster a deeper understanding of our loyalty to Jesuit values, and offer ways for students and alumni to better navigate through life decisions to create a meaningful life. Discernment Day will be a 2-3 hour event for all inductees to have candid conversations on key subject matters with ASN alumni to help build community and encourage organic connection between students and alumni. The ultimate goal is to facilitate deeper consideration over topics including career, vocation, and desires. This event will also give inductees the opportunity to meet and network with ASN alumni who can speak to the role scholarship, loyalty, and service has played in their personal growth and career trajectories.

Alpha Sigma WHO Plans - The Council also recognized that many ASN chapters have difficulty with making our society known on campus. Our newly proposed Alpha Sigma Who programs will hopefully help chapters become more present and inviting for prospective students. This plan is designed to increase engagement with lower-division students so that they are aware of Alpha Sigma Nu’s mission and purpose prior to receiving their invitation to apply. In this way, Alpha Sigma Nu membership will become something students aspire to. The programs outlined in the plan will help to share our mission with a wider audience on campus, particularly first-year students and sophomores. As the honor society permitted to bear the name Jesuit, it is important that we have a stronger presence on Jesuit campuses.

Virtual Alumni Club - Given the current pandemic situation, the Council has acknowledged that new alumni are finding innovative ways to stay connected and engage with others. We recognize that, as young adults, many alumni are moving to new locations for graduate studies, careers, etc. and are not close to our physical clubs in the U,S.. We also are aware that as ASN becomes more international, a new approach to alumni engagement is required. Thus, the Council proposed a virtual alumni club where members can engage and participate on a universal platform. Modeled after our current alumni clubs, this virtual club will have an executive board that will facilitate online events and manage the online community through social media platforms. All members will be automatically enrolled in the virtual club upon graduation and will be able to continue building community with alumni from around the world. The virtual club will be a central place for members to stay active and connect with physical clubs when possible.