by Leah Dopp
Kellie Lind began working for PUC in 1991 as the director of Public Relations, and continued working at the college until 2008. After a little break, she returned as Chief Advancement Officer in May of 2017. Enthusiastic about PUC students and PUC history, there is no doubt that the Alumni and Advancement Department is in good hands. Sitting down with her in the charming Alumni Office, I had the opportunity to ask her a few questions about her plans while in her new position.
What is Alumni and Advancement?
Our department basically exists to do three things. First, through engaging the alumni with the college, our department encourages alumni to become givers by aligning them with projects that interest them. Second, alumni can become resources for our students entering the workforce. And finally, alumni can also recruit new students. So, our department is called Alumni and Advancement, because we work with the alumni to advance the cause of the college.
Tell me about the direction this department is heading.
I feel like everyone who has ever been in this department has wanted to improve alumni relationships, and raise money that will benefit the college. I think that with the strategic planning that we have the opportunity to do now, it’s so much clearer where we need to go and what we need to do to get there. Now we have the tools to do what we need to do. One real advantage we have in this department right now is that everyone who works here are PUC alumni. Having a group that is purely alumni really helps us to engage with people and students. When we’re talking about the college, we have shared experiences with alumni. I remember one time, I was at the home of an older woman who was in her eighties, and come to find out, we lived in the same dorm room in Graf Hall! Of course, she lived there about 60 years before I did—but that just makes you feel super close to somebody right off!
What are your visions/goals for Alumni and
We want increase the number of donors we have, and increase the amount our current donors are giving. We want to engage more community members in activities at the college, and increase opportunities to help our students. The buzzwords in this department right now are: engagement, reconnection and alignment. We want to align donors with projects that interest them. We also want to align students with alumni that might be able to offer them an internship or a job. I would say that right now verbs certainly describe our department. We are a department of action!
What projects is the department currently working on?
Right now, we are working on reconnecting alumni to the college in ways that are significant to them. We are working on some fundraising projects, including phase one of dorm renovations. We are working on raising a million dollars for a stewardship easement for PUC’s forest (the money raised would sit in an account and the interest from it would be used to maintain the forest). We want to start using it more as a teaching tool, and we want the community to come and start using our forest. We are also working on phase four of the library. That project includes the Percy and John Christian Center for Civil Rights, and also a center for Adventist History. Another project is renaming the Campus Center for Rita Hoshino. She graduated from PUC in the 70s, and she later worked here. She was the Doug Wilson of her day! She passed away very expectantly, about four years ago. She was always involved with SA and student leaders. So, we’re going to remodel the campus center and SA offices, put in a handicap restroom, and raise $500,000 more for student leadership scholarships.