Welcome to The Good Alum - where we explore what motivates black alumni to be active within their college communities.
Many times black alumni are scrutinized about their involvement with their schools post graduation, but in reality, many alumni have found creative ways to be active outside of financial giving. We asked each Good Alum the same five questions. These questions are asked to view patterns and similarities across different age groups and schools.
Kymbrea is a 2019 Graduate of Dillard University where she majored in Health Education concentration w/ a minor in Biology ). She is currently pursuing her post-baccalaureate degree at Dominican University in Pre-med. She is also a self-published author of the book, Miracle With A Purpose, available on Amazon & AbeBooks, and the Clothing Line, PGF Apparel.
If you could recreate your college years into a movie, what would be the title and plot?
If I could recreate my college years into a movie, the title would be “BLEU Resilience.” Just like many students, your college years are like a rollercoaster full of ups and downs. This title identifies my time at Dillard University for all the times I hit a hard time or rock bottom and did not think I would make it. Yet, by the grace of God, I came out with victory. Though, coming to Dillard with a new perspective in mind, I knew I would face challenges that would shape me into who I am today. Allowing my bad times to not outweigh my good times and make sure that I took every event, idea, memories(s) & relationship seriously. As Frederick Douglas said, “if there is no struggle, there is no progress.”
Do you feel welcomed in alumni groups and events?
My first homecoming was this year, November 11-13, 2022. It was a pleasure getting to see those I came in with, graduated with, and networked with in the past. As an alumnus, I felt very welcomed and the events generally catered to our needs as alumni if attended.
What do you think is the biggest barrier that hinders alumni and why?
I think the biggest hurdle holding back most alumni is re-engaging alumni to foster a lifelong learning experience and lower retention rates. Another reason is that alumni are not resourceful in implementing engagement strategies that will allow them to connect with students and contribute to overall success. Finally, alumni may not have the means to support the overall success of other students, especially after graduation.
If money and time were not an issue, what are three things you would give back to your school?
If money and time are no object, I think what must be given back is the newly revised Office of Public Health, Alumni Engagement & Student Engagement.
Did your experience as a student affect how you engage with your school as an alumni?
As a former Dillard student, today I am excited to see the benefits of participation and how I am influenced by my peers. As an alumnus, it hasn't stopped me from wanting to stay involved, but it has definitely changed my perspective on how to stay immersed in activities. It is imperative to continue to engage alumni from all walks of life to help increase the networking opportunities for current students. In addition, serve as a primary source of role models, providing practical support to students as they embark on their careers. All in all, let them know that they must always be true to themselves and put God first.
If you would like to connect with our Good Alum Kymbrea, follow her on social media!
IG: kymmsosophisticated FB: Kymbrea Valrey| LinkedIn: Kymbrea Valrey| Snapchat: lilkymm_4 | Business IG: putgodfirst_pgf