• "We Had the Best Conversation": Highlights of Club and Affiliated Group Officers Weekend 2006

    Monday, March 6, 2006
    News Type

With the energy coming off the crowds at events of the fourth annual Club and Affiliated Group Officers Weekend, held during Winter Carnival on February 10–12, 2006, it's a wonder the Calvin and Hobbes ice sculpture didn't melt. More than 100 officers, representing all 6 affiliated groups and 35 clubs, participated.

'We had the best conversation,' said Jan Bent, director of Alumni Relations Information Resources, referring to the communications workshop in which she participated. It's an apt description of the entire CAGOW weekend. By no means a full report, the following recaps a few highlights from what many alumni and staff declared was the best CAGOW yet.

A CAGOW Full of Firsts:

Participation by affiliated group officers was its highest ever:Nineteen officers attended, up from four last year . . . For the first time, affiliated group alumni and students got together in informal Saturday night dinners . . .The Take a Student to Eat (T.A.S.T.E.) program also kicked off, with 10 officers taking students matched on the basis of career interests to restaurants around town . . . David Spalding '76, new vice president of Alumni Relations, introduced himself at the Friday night awards dinner . . . In a special meeting of the Alumni Association, alumni voted to approve an amendment to the constitution that allows all-media voting and a threshold of two-thirds for passage of future amendments.

And the Award Goes to . . .

The Dartmouth Asian Pacific American Alumni Association won the 2005 Affiliated Group of the Year Award . . . Debbie Atuk Tu'04, president of the Native American Alumni Association of Dartmouth, was named 2005 Affiliated Group Leader of the Year . . . Susan Luria '89, president of the Dartmouth Club of Northeast Ohio, was named 2005 Club President of the Year . . . the Dartmouth Club of France won the 2005 Small Club of the Year Award, the Dartmouth Club of Northeast Ohio won the 2005 Medium Club of the Year Award, and the Dartmouth Association of the Rocky Mountains won the 2005 Large Club of the Year Award  . . .  The 2005 Metro Club of the Year Award went to the Dartmouth Club of Greater San Francisco . . . David Peck Jr. '68 received a 2005-06 Dartmouth Alumni Award.  

French Connection:

Because Evy Chan '77, president of the Dartmouth Club of France, was unable to make it to CAGOW, Tricia Shalka '05 accepted the Small Club of the Year Award on the French club's behalf. As you may recall, in 2003 Tricia was very seriously burned in a hotel fire in Lyon, where she was doing undergraduate study. Evy and other members of the club were immediately there for her, staying by her side in the hospital, serving as translators for her family, and providing other help around the clock. 

The Hill Winds in Their Veins, a Dollar in Their Pocket:

In accepting a 2005-06 Alumni Award, David Peck '68 announced that the Class of 1968 has started an endowment with the goal of covering the cost of freshman trips for future incoming classes.  

Taking the Oar:

A club run by only one or two people is a club that'll probably burn out in two years. Which alumni are likely to attend a formal dinner, and which would prefer a gallery opening' Strategies for ensuring leadership succession, for targeting events to alumni, and for other ways to grow a club were discussed in a plenary on best practices on Saturday.

Your Thoughts:

Natalie Garza '98, president of the Dartmouth Association of Latino Alumni: 'The whole weekend was good. Reenergizing. For me, a highlight was the communications workshop. DALA is fairly young, and developing our Website is a top priority, so we can maintain consistent, updated communication. The Saturday night dinner was also great. We talked with current students about their desire for cohesiveness, among themselves and with other student groups. Part of our mission is to help make things better for current students.'

David Eichman '82,member of the board of directors of the Dartmouth Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Alumni Association: 'What was exciting about CAGOW this year was that 21 members of the affiliated groups attended, a critical mass! The Saturday night dinners and T.A.S.T.E. dinners were also strong. There are always the more formal functions, with the presentations and the plaques and the cocktails, but everyone always says, 'I wish I had more time to just talk.' The Saturday dinners allowed that. We had about twenty students at the DGALA dinner.'

Julie Cillo '92, president of the Club Officers Association: 'Connectivity was our theme, and there was so much connecting going on' with other officers, with students, with administrators and Alumni Relations, with faculty, and with trustees. We had great opportunities to listen to each other and share ideas. I'd like to think that participants were able to take the energy from those exchanges back to their clubs and make some terrific things happen among their local alumni bodies.'

Belinda Chiu '98,DAPAAA representative to the Alumni Council: 'This was probably the best, most productive weekend for me. A few years ago, it seemed that affiliated groups were sort of an add-on; this time was very different. And I think it'll only get better as more folks realize there are many ways for alumni to get involved. There's such crossover between alumni in groups and clubs ' many of us wear different hats.

'One highlight for me was the Saturday night dinner, meeting current Asian Pacific American students and hearing their concerns and news;this is really helpful to DAPAAA as we refine our goals. Another was attending the talk by Tommy Lee Woon, associate dean of student life in the Office of Pluralism and Leadership (OPAL), and learning about the broad work OPAL does. I wish everyone had heard his talk, because all alumni should be aware of the contribution OPAL makes to the student body.'