The Williamsonian Spring 2022 - Page 6

6 A letter to all Williamson alumni

We are Pleased to Announce our New ‘ Williamson Association of Alumni ’

As we are sure you can agree , Williamson alumni are lifelong stakeholders of the college , bound together by a shared experience that has impacted our lives in significant measure .
Williamson men are who we are , in large part because of our experiences at Williamson . Williamson recognizes that the school has a responsibility to embrace all of our alumni as vital members of the college community and offer meaningful engagement opportunities that alumni enjoy and in which they find value .
For Williamson to be healthy and viable for generations to come , we need an engaged and active alumni community .
Alumni engagement at Williamson has been dropping significantly over the last two decades . To understand how the school can best serve our alumni , we engaged in research to determine how alumni associations at other institutions successfully represent and engage with their graduates .
The data revealed that the majority of institutions are moving away from the traditional independent , dues-paying alumni association to an organizational model that is fully integrated into the institution , where every graduate is a member upon graduation .
This organizational shift allows institutions to :
1 . provide centralized points of service for alumni resources and experiences ;
2 . support personalized and consistent relationships between the individual alumnus and the school community ;
3 . ensure responsible utilization of school resources that result in a high level of impact for all Williamson alumni .
We also reviewed data on the existing
Williamson Alumni Association , which is an independent nonprofit organization operating under a dues-paying model .
The data illustrated steadily declining membership and meeting attendance , a lack of viable revenue streams , and a lack of diversity within the membership and leadership . Currently , only 2 percent of dues-paying members represent alumni under the age of 40 and 3.5 percent below the age of 50 . The Association has also struggled with effectively
communicating with alumni .
Given the abundance of data , it is clear that in order for Williamson to meet its responsibility to its alumni and to the institution itself , it must move forward in building a modern organization that is representative of all Williamson alumni and provides meaningful opportunities for graduates to participate in experiences , volunteerism , communications , and philanthropic endeavors .
To that end , Williamson will adopt a new formalized organization inclusive of all existing and future Williamson alumni . The organization will be called the Williamson Association of Alumni ( WAA ). Membership will begin automatically upon graduation from Williamson and will be retroactive for all current alumni . The new organization will be overseen by a leadership group that will include an elected WAA alumni president , the director of alumni
relations , and an alumni liaison from the board of trustees . The group will be supported by an elected alumni vice president and a volunteer alumni board of managers . The WAA will commence work on July 1 , 2022 .
Williamson has further determined that it would not be prudent or efficient to support two alumni engagement organizations . As such , the school will provide support to the Williamson Alumni Association ’ s operations through June 30 , 2022 . On July 1 , 2022 ,
school resources will be directed to support the launch and operation of the WAA .
Over the past year , the school engaged in extensive dialogue with the Williamson Alumni Association leadership to negotiate a proposed transition plan to a new organizational model . Representatives of the school administration , as well as the board of trustees personally met with members of the association leadership on multiple occasions to share data and navigate an agreeable transition .
On Thursday , March 24 at the Williamson Alumni Association meeting , the association members voted unanimously to support the WAA under a one-year “ trial-period ” during which the Williamson Alumni Association will hold all of their activities in abeyance allowing for a seamless transition
to the new organizational structure . At the end of fiscal year 2022-2023 , the Williamson Alumni Association will reconvene to determine next steps for their organization . The Williamson Alumni Association leadership and its members continue to have full discretion over the future operations of its organization and its financial assets . Members are advised to contact the Williamson Alumni Association officers with any questions related to those matters .
It is our strong desire that all alumni will participate in and support a smooth transition to this new organizational model . We invite all members of the Williamson Alumni Association to be involved in the WAA to help guide it forward and build strong roots in the alumni community at Williamson College of the Trades .
We extend our deepest gratitude to the many alumni volunteers who have participated in and contributed to the Williamson Alumni Association over the decades . Your leadership and generosity have long benefitted our alumni and our institution .
It is our intention to continue the legacy of the brotherhood of graduates here at Williamson , and we firmly believe that this change will open the door for many more alumni like you to get involved , share your leadership , skills and talents , and work together in support of a robust and connected alumni community .
To learn more about the Williamson Association of Alumni and ways to get involved and serve , visit : www . williamson . edu / alumni / WAA email the WAA at : alumni @ williamson . edu .

Six Students Win Gold at SkillsUSA State Competitions

Six Williamson students won gold and one won silver in SkillsUSA State competitions in Hershey recently . Winning gold were : Nathan Case 2W3 , Creed Norris 2W4 , and Ian Hampton 2W3 , all machine tool technology students , in automated manufacturing technology ; Gideon Cyr 2W3 , a carpentry student , in carpentry ; Aaron Tallman 2W2 , a machine tool technology student , in computerized numerical control ( CNC ) technician ; Ryan Fallon 2W3 , a masonry student , in masonry ; and Nicholas Mniecznikowski 2W3 , a machine tool technology student , in precision machining .
Scott Wiltshire 2W3 , a carpentry student , won silver in cabinetry .
Peter Zwolak 0W7 , SkillsUSA advisor and director of construction technology-masonry , said “ Our students represented Williamson very well with their behavior and demonstration of their skills . They competed against the best of the best from across the state and did extremely well . I ’ m looking forward to seeing them represent Williamson at nationals this summer .”
All first-place winners will compete at the national competitions from June 20-24 in Atlanta , Ga .
The eight students who competed at SkillsUSA states , winning seven gold and one silver medal , are ( from left to right ): Gideon Cyr , Scott Wiltshire , Creed Norris , Aaron Tallman , Ryan Fallon , Nathan Chase , Ian Hampton , and Nicholas Mniecznikowski .