“With this network we really want to connect Stanners across various education fields,” explained Mr. Chris Dougherty '91, co-chair of the network committee. “In the public school sphere, teachers, counselors, social workers, and physical, occupational and speech therapists all work together. Though that may not be true in some private schools, we’re keeping the massive scope of the DOE in mind.” Dougherty also noted that establishing personal connections is an important goal of the Alumni Education Network. “One of the young alumni who attended our inaugural event is studying to be a teacher because of her experience at Molloy. At the event I had the opportunity to walk her over to one of our administrators who coordinates student teachers and internships,” said Dougherty. “In another instance, I connected one of our committee members, who is interested in psychology and counseling, to an experienced alumnus currently working as a clinical psychologist. It was a joy for me to help bridge these connections.”
In reviewing the first Alumni Education Network event, Dougherty and fellow committee members observed that the majority of those in attendance reflected a younger demographic. “First and foremost, it was exciting to see so many people at the event. There was definitely a buzz in the crowd and plenty of networking happening,” said Dougherty. “The remarkable thing is that many in attendance were younger alumni, including many who entered their fields because of their work at various special camps at Esopus. Those experiences create an instant bond at these kinds of events and make it easy to break the ice. We definitely feel good about creating a platform that our younger alumni are comfortable taking advantage of.”
Dougherty suggested ways the network may evolve moving forward. “We’ll explore inviting guest speakers who are experts in their fields, as well as combining happy hours with workshops or training. Any other suggestions from our alumni at-large are welcome,” said Dougherty.