Winter 2019 Issue

To Affinity and Beyond

By Kirsten Shiroma Quackenbush '05
Regional Engagement Committee Chair, Alumni Association Board of Directors

Starting in this issue, the Alumni Focus column will feature the voices of engaged alumni from the William & Mary community.

Do you miss seeing your sorority sister or college roommate? Looking for a volunteer opportunity? Want more William & Mary in your life? I did, and I found answers in my involvement with my local alumni chapter. To me such engagement is meaningful in two major ways. First, it allows me to continue connections with other local alumni, meet alumni I previously did not know and stay current with W&M happenings. Second, I feel that it is what I owe to alma mater, a place I called home for four years. I strive to positively impact the community around me, and I fill that sense of purpose through my continued engagement with the D.C. Metro chapter.

W&M alumni chapters and affinity groups around the world offer all kinds of events and ways to get involved. Affinity groups bring together alumni with similar affiliations and interests — for a full list, see affinity. Last year, I was part of the board committee that looked at ways to recognize the exceptional programming of chapters and affinity groups. We created the Annual Review & Accolades (ARAs) to highlight the strengths of chapters and affinity groups in their geographic regions, demographics and sizes.

Chapters and affinity groups can look to the ARAs for ideas as they plan future events. In particular, I would like to help organize or attend some of the events from the unique and cultural/educational categories in the future! Who wouldn’t want to join fellow alumni at Brunch at the Zoo or a W&M Day on the (ski) Slopes? Read about the Annual Review & Accolades submissions and winners here: We are incredibly proud of the time and talents that all chapters and affinity groups have expressed through their submissions this past year.

I encourage you to attend the next local area chapter or affinity group event, or go online to find a virtual opportunity to engage wherever you are! Events like these allow alumni to catch up with old friends and connect with new friends. Find all the ways to connect at And, if so desired, you can take your involvement one step further and participate as a chapter board or committee member.