Many people think they need to wait to join a college development council until they’re in the middle of their careers. However, five former students who earned their bachelor’s degrees during the past decade are bringing their youthful energy to Texas A&M University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ development council.
The five – Allison Scott ’02, James Decker ’06, Shannon Lucas ’02, Meredith Neely ’02 and Tyler Graham ’06 – are part of a 109-member council that advises the vice chancellor and dean on agricultural issues and works to attract financial resources to enhance the college’s educational programs. Each member pays $1,000 in dues to serve on the council.
For Scott, joining the development council is a family tradition. “My dad, Bill Scott ’71, has been a long time member of the council,” said the chief of staff for Representative Lanham Lyle (R-Wichita Falls). “Having been a kid who ‘grew up’ in the council, I attended events and meetings with my parents. When I was a student at A&M, a few of my friends received scholarships that the council provided. I have always known what a great group of people belong to the council and joined as soon as I could.”
Decker, the newest member of the council, waited three years after completing lawschool before joining in 2012. “It was always in my mind to join ‘later in life,’ but I wasn’t quite sure when the timing would be right,” he said. “However, the Texas A&M Foundation’s development officers for the College of Ag have worked recently to get younger graduates involved and invested within the college’s fundraising programs. I thought that was a very worthwhile endeavor and I wanted to do my part to assist, both to help the college and to inspire my peers to do the same.”
Both describe the council members as being very committed to student success. “Being a member of the council, I’ve had the opportunity to meet other professionals who all want to see the students of College of Agriculture and Life Sciences succeed in class, in extra-curricular activities and internships, and on to graduation,” Scott said. “The council helps make all of these a possibility for students.”
This type of service also provides recent graduates with a way to say thanks to their alma mater. “Many of us have ambitions of giving back to the college at some point in the future, but you have to start somewhere,” Decker said. “The development council provides a great opportunity to take that leap and make a commitment. So many of us benefit from the development council’s efforts while in school, so it’s a very rewarding opportunity to pay that forward to future classes of Aggies involved in the same organizations I participated in.”
You can support Texas A&M’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences by joining the development councilor with a gift to the Texas A&M Foundation.
Patrick Williams ’92, Director of Development, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
email@example.com | (979) 845-8161 or (800) 392-3310
By: Dorian Martin