Our goal is for all alumni to develop a powerful emotional connection to Trinity—recognizing that this valued relationship will strengthen and change over time. To achieve this, we must take proactive steps to foster mutually beneficial relationships between alumni and the University. We will regularly connect with our alumni, celebrate their accomplishments and milestones, and encourage their continued personal and professional growth after graduation. We will provide opportunities for alumni to participate in Trinity-related activities both on campus and in their own communities. By empowering our alumni to participate, lead, and take ownership of the future direction of the University, we will be assured that Trinity’s fundamental character endures. Our alumni form an influential network that is uniquely and persuasively capable of enhancing the University’s reputation in the marketplace and in the minds of prospective students.
Trinity University hosted Trinity on Tour for the third year, bringing together alumni, parents, and friends from around the country for a day of learning. With more than 80 Tigers in attendance at the Hilton Anatole in Dallas, Trinity on Tour brought together conversations on leadership, earthquakes, the Mediterranean Sea, and everything in between.
The day began with a behind-the-scenes tour of the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, where Trinity on Tour attendees immersed themselves in the many mystiques of the world, spanning in time from the Big Bang to modern prosthetics. Nick Severino ’88, vice president and CFO of Apple Retail, delivered the lunchtime keynote, “The Importance of a Liberal Arts Education in a Technological Age: A Personal Story.” Severino noted that a faculty-led study abroad program with business professor Donald Clark in Shanghai was part of what inspired him to open the first Apple store in China.
Between June 2018 and May 2019 Trinity University hosted 13 webinars in which alumni experts and Trinity faculty covered a variety of topics ranging from personal enrichment, life and family, and financial and career development, and education on social and political issues dominating national and international discussions.
Deborah Lehr ’86, CEO of Basilinna and a strategic consultant representing companies in China, the U.S., and the Middle East, spoke on cultural racketeering and the fight to halt the trade in blood antiquities and the sale of history to support terrorism and organized crime. As the founder and chairman of the antiquities coalition, she has dedicated herself to leading the fight against cultural genocide and illicit trafficking of antiquities which is a multi-billion dollar industry.
And Gina Gaedke ’89, JD, CPA, board-certified in estate planning and probate by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, led a seminar on getting a family estate in order. Her webinar included planning for disability, what happens if you die and do not have a will or alternative estate plan in place, and some major issues to consider regarding drafting an estate plan and how critical it is to have a communication plan.
New webinars are presented every month, and all webinars are recorded and are available to watch on the Tiger Network. Webinars are also available on the Tiger Network channel on Roku, Apple TV, and Amazon Fire TV.
Since September 2017, the Office of Alumni Relations has produced the Learning TUgether podcast series, an extension of its lifelong learning initiatives that also include webinars and a book club. Released on the first Tuesday of every month, the podcasts feature faculty and alumni experts that explore a diverse range of topics.
The podcast series aims to foster a conversation between the hosts, the experts, and the greater Trinity community—“but it’s on your time,” notes Selim Sharif, director of alumni education and engagement. The podcasts attempt to reverse the “habit of talking at each other” that seems to have manifested recently, as noted by Kelly Grey Carlisle, Trinity English professor and co-host of the introductory episode.
Through the podcast series, listeners also get a glimpse of the courses Trinity students are currently taking. For example, the opening episode, “Climate Changed,” discussed the same issues as the First-Year Experience course of the same name. Other episodes include “Great Books of the Ancient World,” hosted by Corinne Pache, Ph.D., and Willis Salomon, Ph.D., as well as “Predicting the 2018 Academy Awards,” hosted by Patrick Keating, Ph.D. All current and episodes and previews of upcoming topics can be viewed at gotu.us/podcasts.