OSU Alumni Association works to keep track of graduates

Ty Sokalski Orange Media Network
Information courtesy of the OSU Alumni Association website. Each hat represents an area which graduates have indicated they are moving post-graduation. However, this graphic does not represent all of the OSU new alumni population.

Sydney Sullivan, News Contributor

Students find opportunities to further their studies around the world


An Oregon State University student is sitting in a Parisian cafe sipping a cappuccino. In walks someone they have never met before, but the apparent stranger is wearing Beaver gear. After their time at school, OSU graduates can end up anywhere.

According to Matthew Fenstermaker, the alumni early engagement director at OSU, a recent poll was sent out by the OSU Alumni Association to graduating students, asking them where they will be going after graduation.

“We’re providing a resource for our recent graduates to help them stay connected,” Fenstermaker said.

Fenstermaker added that the Alumni Association has created a map on their website located under the tab for “Students” and drop-down menu “Where will you be?” in order to display the information visually, as well as to help students see where their peers will be going in the near future.

Where students are going is also important to Fenstermaker and the other members of the alumni relations team in order to better understand where the Alumni Association should be focusing offering its programs, according to Fenstermaker.

According to the Alumni Association’s website, there are currently two directors from the Alumni Association who help to run the travel program at OSU: Julie Schwartz, an associate executive director of programs, and Kate Sanders, the alumni programs director. The travel program, located on the Alumni Association website under the tab for “Get Involved” and the drop-down menu “Alumni Group Travel,” has traveling activities that range from “Light—some walking required” to “Very Active—physical fitness required, long walks, uneven terrain, possibly very cold weather.”

While the Alumni Association works to bring Beavers together from all over the globe, Regional Networks has a special emphasis on California, Portland, Ore., Boise, Idaho, Seattle, Wash. and greater Oregon. These networks are made possible by volunteers that help to run regular events planned by professional staff. There have also been groups established in Asia and Europe thanks to help from volunteers, according to the Alumni Association website.

On the brink of graduating himself, digital communication arts major Erik Passow says he will be spending his summer in London studying theatre arts at the University of Westminster.

“I wanted to go out with a bang,” Passow said.

Passow will be going solo on his journey to London and does not yet know anyone from the area. He says he will miss the connections and friends OSU has given him over the past five years, but is excited to do something new.

Zoey Nelson, a zoology major at OSU, will be on a similar journey abroad as she travels to Dublin, Ireland. After graduation in the spring, Nelson will be going to Ireland to study veterinary medicine at University College Dublin. According to Nelson, OSU has given her great classes, professors, clubs and volunteer opportunities.

“One of my favorite clubs was the Pre-Vet Club, which allowed me to volunteer in the Large Animal Hospital at OSU’s Veterinary School,” Nelson said.

According to Nelson, the thing she will miss most about leaving OSU is the town of Corvallis.

“I have found Corvallis to be a welcoming home and the perfect place to be a college student,” Nelson said.

According to Fenstermaker, this is only the second year the Alumni Association has collected information on where graduates will be going for the summer, but will hopefully help former students stay connected.

“Beavers stay together,” Fenstermaker said.

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