A new organization launched earlier this month to promote the long term success of The Evergreen State College, its students and its alumni; the Associated Alumni and Friends of Evergreen is part of The Evergreen State College Foundation, a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to building an outstanding future for Evergreen.
Evergreen has educated more than 40,000 students since it opened in 1971, but the new association is not limited to alumni; members will be able to lend their voices to pressing issues, advocate on behalf of the college, network with each other, mentor students and recent graduates and attend special events. Members make a small donation to join. Members can also support Evergreen financially at higher levels, particularly during the year-end giving season, as the 2014 tax year draws to a close. The association is open to anyone who cares about Evergreen.
Glen Kriekenbeck, a 1989 Evergreen graduate, is a passionate supporter of the new association. As Committee Chair on Alumni and Friends for the Foundation’s Board of Governors, Kriekenbeck acknowledged that, “advocacy is the first and key part of the Association,” but that, “networking, mentoring, recruitment and philanthropy are all part of the larger vision.” The previous Evergreen Alumni Association operated as part of the college and not as part of a nonprofit.
In his meetings with alumni in Washington and across the country, Kriekenbeck said he has been, “amazed,” at the value Evergreen’s core ideas have brought to its graduates’ professional lives. “A wine maker and a coffee buyer both emphasized how important it is to understand the effect of local land use policy on the resulting crop and end product,” he said. Another alumnus, a software developer, mentioned his graphic design training at Evergreen helped him visualize structures in code and present to end users. He hopes that the new association will encourage such dialogue and provide support to students and more recent graduates. But Kriekenbeck noted that, “Evergreen is not just about learning to support your vocation; it’s about learning to be in relationship with each other and society.”
To that end, he hopes the new group will be a connector “between our friends and graduates, the college and the wider community.”Associated Alumni and Friends of Evergreen
Giving to Evergreen