QUAA President's Column: The perks of membership
Being a member of the QUAA – as all alumni are – brings with it a host of valuable benefits and privileges.
The mission of the Queen’s University Alumni Association (QUAA), which represents you and more than 134,000 other alumni, is “to reach out and foster a lifelong association with Queen’s, to engage our members in the life and work of the University, and to serve the alumni community in all its diversity.” Ever wonder how we do this?
First, we welcome our new members. Alumni speakers were at each Convocation ceremony this spring, connecting with members of the Class of 2012. We also connect young grads with the greater Queen’s network. The August issue of our @Queen’s email newsletter outlined some of the programs and benefits that QUAA membership automatically bestows. If you didn’t receive this email, please update your email address and stay connected with Queen’s.
Your alumni card has many benefits, including great discounts. We’re always negotiating new partnerships for our alumni. Our newest discount is a 12 per cent saving on all Via Rail bookings. Now that’s a tangible benefit. Visit the alumni card site to see what other benefits we have for you.
This month, you may see in your mail an application for the Queen’s MasterCard from MBNA Canada. As one of our affinity partners, MBNA donates a portion of the amount of each qualifying purchase made with the card back to Queen’s to support student and alumni programs. And it’s the only credit card I know with Grant Hall on it!
The QUAA also provides grants and loans each year to innovative programs that enrich the Queen’s community. Congratulations to our 2011 Grants and Loans recipients: artignite (a community-based arts festival); Arts and Science Undergraduate Society Autism Partnership; Queen’s Project for International Development; and QTV, the campus student television program.
Do you know of a program that could benefit from a QUAA grant or loan? The deadline for 2012 applications is October 31. Learn more at bit.ly/QUAAgrant.
Also in October, the QUAA will host its annual Alumni Volunteer Summit (AVS) in Kingston, bringing together alumni volunteers (and prospective volunteers) for networking, workshops, and lots of fun. Please join us October 12-13. For more details, please visit alumni.queensu.ca/avs.
My favourite part of this weekend is the chance to honour some of the extraordinary members of the Queen’s community at our Alumni Awards Gala. I’d like to congratulate all of this year’s award winners:
- ALUMNI HUMANITARIAN AWARD – Farouk Jiwa, Artsci’98;
- HERBERT J. HAMILTON AWARD – Mary Reed, Artsci’84;
- ALUMNI AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN TEACHING – James Fraser, Department of Physics, Engineering Physics and Astronomy (please see p. 34 for a more information);
- ONE TO WATCH AWARD – Max Bailey, Sc’11;
- OUTSTANDING STUDENT AWARD – Jennifer Parker, Artsci’12, Ed’13;
- BRANCH MARSHA LAMPMAN AWARD – Corry Bazley, Com’92;
- BRANCH RISING STAR AWARD – Zhaodi Culbreath, Sc’08;
- BRANCH EVENT OF THE YEAR AWARD – Regina Branch for the “Regina Queen’s Alumni MiniU”; and,
- QSAA VOLUNTEER OF DISTINCTION AWARD – Cicely Johnston, Artsci’12.
We will also present the Alumni Achievement Award, the highest honour bestowed by the QUAA. Every year, this Award is given to a Queen’s graduate who has demonstrated the high ideals imparted by a Queen’s University education through significant contribution to one or more of the following: the arts or sciences; public service; leadership in business; industry or a profession; community, charitable, or volunteer work.
This year, we are proud to celebrate the achievements of Governor General David Johnston. A 1966 Law graduate, he began his career that same year as an assistant professor of law at Queen’s. He also taught at U of T before becoming Dean of Law at Western in 1974. In 1979, he was named Principal and Vice-Chancellor of McGill. In 1999, he became President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Waterloo. He was also a founding chair of the National Round Table on the Environment and the Economy. He is the author or co-author of more than two dozen books. His academic specializations are securities regulation, corporation law, and information technology law. In 2010, he was sworn in as the 28th Governor General of Canada.
In other campus news, the QUAA is also providing input as the University explores new options for alumni reunions. We are among the stakeholders – with University administration, staff, student leaders, and Kingston community members – who are participating in discussions on creating a new fall reunion model for Queen’s. I will keep you posted as these discussions progress.
The QUAA is proud to be working hard for our alumni community: welcoming, supporting, recognizing, and representing you.