Alumni

Alumni Discovery Project

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Now in its third year, the Alumni Discovery Project at Whitworth is an innovative initiative based in the office of alumni relations. It provides Whitworth with the opportunity to hear your story.

Our hope is that, over the next few years, some of our most talented Whitworth students and recent graduates will meet with selected alumni throughout the world as a part of this initiative. Our student ambassadors will also want to hear about alumni experiences at Whitworth, about the lives that graduates have made in the years since they left Whitworth, about the role the mind-and-heart mission has played in their vocational lives, and about what Whitworth means to each of them. And this effort will give alumni the opportunity to hear first-hand about life on campus today.

Since 1890, Whitworth has upheld its mission to provide an education of mind and heart to its students, and we believe that the Alumni Discovery Project fits well into this vision. We believe that the stories of all Whitworthians are important and worthy of sharing.

We're excited to provide an opportunity for the unique Whitworth community to continue to grow as students and alumni to meet over a cup of coffee and to share their unique and common stories.

If you have questions, please review the FAQ section below, or contact us at alumni@whitworth.edu.

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Lauren Roberts To learn more about the Discovery Project and meet the student ambassadors who connected with hundreds of alums along the West Coast last summer, check out the "Voyage of Discovery" feature in the Fall/Winter 2013 issue of Whitworth Today Lauren Roberts Watch a video interview with student ambassador Lauren Roberts, '14.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Alumni Discovery Project at Whitworth?
The Discovery Project is an initiative at Whitworth to engage proud alumni with some of our finest students in conversations about alums' Whitworth stories and about their lives since graduation. As an institution that values the education of both mind and heart, we see this project as a perfect fit for engaging alumni and students in dialogue.

When did the Alumni Discovery Project begin at Whitworth?
In 2013. Since that time, our student ambassadors have interviewed nearly 700 Whitworth alumni across the Western U.S.

Who is chosen to be interviewed?
Our hope is to interview a wide range of Whitworth alumni, and that may include you! Student ambassadors are hired from across the country, and we're matching those students with many of the alumni in their region. Currently, we're unable to send students outside the U.S., but we hope to do so eventually. Alumni selected for the Discover Project will receive a letter from Whitworth President Beck Taylor; also, a student ambassador in each selectee's region will call or e-mail to set up a convenient meeting time.

Why haven't I been invited to participate in an interview?
We hope to interview a cross-section of Whitworth alumni over the next several years. We're currently reaching out to alums in areas of highest concentration and in regions where many of our current students live during the summer.

What will the interviews cover?
The interview is a great chance to share your story! It will focus on your life since graduation, your memories of your alma mater, and your impressions of today's Whitworth. You'll have the opportunity to ask your ambassador about campus life and the latest news from the university. You will not be filmed or recorded, but the well-trained and -prepared student ambassador may take minimal notes in the course of your conversation.

Does Whitworth really want to hear what I have to say?
Absolutely. Our ambassadors are aware that Whitworth alumni have all had different experiences – some positive, some negative. Because we believe that each alum's voice is important, we encourage you not to exclude yourself if you have things to say that you think the university might not want to hear. It's our hope to learn from a wide range of alumni experiences.

Who will be conducting the interviews?
Current students will be hired to interview alumni during Whitworth's summer break. The rigorous application process allows us to select some of our best Whitworth students and to train them well to serve as our student ambassadors to alumni.

How long will the interviews be?
We anticipate the one-time interview will take an hour. We have trained the student ambassadors to keep to that time frame in order to honor your time and theirs.

Where will the interviews take place?
Interviews will take place in a coffee shop, an office building, or another conveniently located professional and public location in each interviewee's area.

Will I be asked for money during the interview?
No. Our student ambassadors simply want to hear your stories.

Will the student ambassador read from or take notes during the interview?
Our student ambassadors were chosen for many reasons, not least of which are their excellent listening and communication skills, and they have had training in listening and retaining information. They will not be reading questions from a page, nor will they be taking notes during your hour-long interview. They are there to have a conversation with you and will summarize the content of your meeting soon after the interview.

What will you do with the information from the interviews?
The information collected as part of the interviews will help strengthen the programs, services and communications we offer to alumni around the globe. The university hopes to learn how to care more effectively for its students and alumni as a result of these interviews.

I have a few more questions or comments about the Alumni Discovery Project. Whom may I contact?
Please contact Josh Cleveland, assistant director of alumni & parent relations, at jcleveland@whitworth.edu or 509.777.3732.