For years, we have been rooted in our commitment to guiding our Scholars not just into a postsecondary program but through to graduation. As our Scholars make the transition from first-generation college students to first-generation professionals, however, they come to realize that, despite their diploma, there is still a lot to learn. Through partnerships and looking to our own alumni for guidance, we are taking steps to address these needs.
Our Inaugural Alumni Committee
Beginning in July 2019, six alumni Scholars came together to form Palmer Scholars’ first Alumni Committee. Together, these alumni took part in brainstorming sessions to identify alumni needs and what Palmer Scholars could do to support alumni. Seeking to reconnect alumni to the Palmer Scholars family, the committee operates under the mantra “once a Scholar, always a Scholar!” For committee member Jessica Solis, the Alumni Committee will not only create opportunities for alumni to get practical information like setting up an IRA, but also provide a structured setting for alumni to connect with other professionals of color. “I look forward to creating a group that will offer support and information that will be useful for navigating through life after college because adulting is hard!” Jessica said.
Partnering for Success
Recognizing the power of partnership, we work together with other postsecondary success organizations in the area including Act Six, Peace Community Center, and College Success Foundation, to share best practices and hold joint alumni events. Additionally, to further diversify the networks our alumni can tap into, we have developed a partnership with the Young Professionals Network for Tacoma-Pierce County. To bridge the gap, a Palmer Scholars staff member will be present at the Young Professionals Network’s free happy hour event every third Wednesday of the month.
Our First Alumni Event
The Alumni Committee is hosting its first event on Thursday, February 27th from 5-7 PM at North Lights Coffee Company. North Lights Coffee Company is owned by Pastor Alex Davis, son of Palmer Scholars co-founder Rev. Al Davis, and we felt there was no better place to kick off our work with alumni than a venue tied to our origins as an organization! The event, titled “Loving Ourselves and Others: Healthy Relationships in 2020,” will feature Palmer Scholars alumna and licensed family and marriage therapist Ireri Kang, who will facilitate a workshop on healthy relationships and self-care. This event is free for alumni of Palmer Scholars, Act Six, Peace Community Center, and College Success Foundation to attend. Alumni can register here.
This blog post is sponsored by:
Dukesbay Productions' mission is to present theatrical works that reflect and celebrate our diverse society in the Pacific Northwest.