Young Alumni Lend New Ideas to ASN Initiatives

Posted in: Alpha Sigma Nu

Alpha Sigma Nu launched a new initiative this year, the Young Alumni Advisory Council (YAAC). The inaugural cohort of 10 alumni members, who graduated in the last five years, represents diverse backgrounds, alma maters, and experiences with Alpha Sigma Nu. Each brings a different professional skill set as well as knowledge of the 10 ASN chapters from which they hail. These diverse experiences will provide an important advisory tool for Alpha Sigma Nu's Board of Directors, as the YAAC will present to the Board of Directors recommendations on topics of importance to ASN after each quarterly virtual meeting. This cohort will advise the Board through December 2021.

We welcome to the YAAC Morgan Menzzasalma (Fordham `18), Joshua Madrid (Regis U `16), Lindsey Hueston (Saint Joseph's `15), Carlos Martinez (Santa Clara `14), Catherine Warren (Loyola Maryland `14), Clara Cecil (Georgetown `17), Declan Foley (Holy Cross `14), Margaret Mary DeMark (Fairfield `14), Robert McGowan (Scranton `14), and Stephen Ferguson (Boston College `14). Learn more about our Council members.

Young alumni are a constituency that has been historically difficult to engage and keep connected to the Alpha Sigma Nu mission. This period in a member's life is typically marked by several address changes, graduate school or new jobs, and often beginning a life with their life partners. It is critical, however, to keep those alumni members connected to ASN through these transitions, especially those who were active and engaged student members. This council was created to ensure that the voices of these young alumni are at the table when making decisions about the path and future of the Jesuit honor society. It also provides a platform for ASN alumni members to remain active and committed to ASN after graduation.

The first meeting of the YAAC took place in March, where the members tackled the topic of our Jesuit identity. At this meeting, ASN staff members instructed the council on challenges facing our honor society given the secularization of society and the waning religiosity of college students in the U.S. and especially at our international chapters. The heart of the discussion focused on how to maintain our Jesuit identity while appealing to today's student population. At this inaugural meeting, the YAAC was also tasked with electing a leadership team. Morgan Menzzasalma (Fordham `18) and Joshua Madrid (Regis `16) were elected co-Chairpersons for the Council. 

The most exciting thing about being a part of YAAC is that I am connecting with like-minded individuals from across the country. This group is made up of passionate, dedicated young adults who want the best for Alpha Sigma Nu. I am most looking forward to working on bolstering the alumni- student connection. I would love for all members to see the value in Alpha Sigma Nu and know they have a mission-driven network to support them throughout their lives. I believe this will help students who are in seek of direction and alumni who miss the connection to the Jesuit educated community.  - Morgan Menzzasalma

As a member of YAAC, I am most excited about working with colleagues who share a similar passion for Alpha Sigma Nu and Jesuit education. We are all committed to helping ASN grow as a society and be a true companionship of scholars, just like the first companions of St. Ignatius when he founded the Jesuits. I am keen to explore new avenues of programing and activities that our society can adopt to help students and alumni better live their pledge of scholarship, loyalty, and service. I am confident that this council will help the society discern what paths it should take to address the changing needs of their students and alumni. - Joshua Madrid

We look forward to the discussions, subcommittee work, and recommendations of the YAAC on topics such as marketing and communications, chapter management, diversity and inclusion, fundraising, and Ignatian leadership. Their perspectives will surely help guide the Society to greater engagement of young alumni members and greater success in charting the course of the Jeusit honor society.