As the academic year comes to a close and the first class assembles to graduate, students and the Career Development Center are beginning to look toward the need for an institutional-level network that connects new alumni with current students and NYU New York alumni.
Hazel Raja, director of the CDC, laid out the general plan of action.
“We have an Alumni Relations Officer at [NYU Abu Dhabi]; we are working closely … to cultivate relationships with new alumni in the region,” she said.
While the system is nascent, Raja emphasized that this process has been in the works for four years and that alumni are important to the success of NYUAD and its current students.
“[Alumni from NYUNY and the soon-to-be NYUAD alumni] serve as a fantastic resource to the CDC, and many [NYUNY] alumni have collaborated with the CDC by connecting us with their employers for internships and jobs, serving as career mentors, speaking on career panels and attending networking events,” she wrote to The Gazelle.
However, even though the CDC and the university will be establishing Facebook and LinkedIn groups, sophomore Hussein Karzoumi expressed concerned about the contact database that the CDC plans to create. He claims it will not be available to current students nor other alumni. He posted on NYUAD Facebook groups, suggesting that a student-run network might be more effective. In correspondence with The Gazelle, Karzoumi explained the reasoning behind his initiative.
“There needs to be a strong and sustained effort to maintain the invaluable network and relationships built here at NYUAD, in addition to the efforts of the school’s administration,” wrote Karzoumi.
“The fact that nobody knows what students want and need more than the students themselves, combined with the high level of intimacy of our student body, necessitates a unique student-run platform that is connective ... without putting [an] additional burden on the official alumni relations department,” he continued.
Students responded positively to his post, doubting whether the university’s initiative will be useful as a way for alumni and students to connect and act as resources for each other.
When asked to comment, seniors Jorge Zárate and Jasmine Boutrous both said that they were relatively unaware of the CDC’s plans. Senior Jihee Lim stated that while she has heard about the alumni network, she has yet to utilize it.
Sam Ball is the deputy opinion editor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org