By Danny Huizinga
What does “Baylor Forward” mean for us as students? It means that, finally, students will be included in a unified alumni network that reflects the unity of our student body.
For years, there has been a tense conflict between the administration and the Baylor Alumni Association. As a current student, I want to ensure that my friends and I will be included in a global network that cares about every one of us.
The outcome of the vote on Saturday will surely affect our parents who graduated 30 years ago. But, most importantly, it will affect us. In just a few years, all of us will be Baylor alumni looking to stay informed about campus developments, network with fellow alums and interact with our school.
I, for one, have never been invited to a single BAA event. On the other hand, I have been to send-offs, football watch parties and prayer groups all the way up in Chicago thanks to the Baylor Alumni Network.
In fact, it actually costs money to become a BAA member. Of the close to 70,000 alumni in the last 20 years, the BAA only includes roughly 3,400 as members.
I want an alumni group that will serve me no matter where I live and that won’t charge me to support the school I love. I have been blessed by Baylor, and I hope Saturday will mark a day when we agree on this compromise and move forward as one unified community.
Remarkable leaders from Baylor Nation agree. Regent Emeritus and Baylor alumnus Drayton McLane (who made the lead gift for the new Baylor Stadium, the McLane Student Life Center and more) have voiced their support. President Ken Starr says the agreement would convey a “commitment to a shared sense of purpose and a context of amity and respect.”
Collin Cox, president of the BAA, says the proposal “makes sense for the Baylor Alumni Association and the university as we move ahead in a new era.”
I look forward to this new era, an era where all Baylor alumni can network and support each other without paying dues or arguing about who is more important. A “yes” vote will ensure that we all get the most out of our degrees after we graduate.
A “yes” vote is a vote for students. In the words of Robert Griffin III, “Baylor we are, and Baylor we’ll always be.”
Danny Huizinga is a junior Business Fellow from Chicago. Follow him on twitter @HuizingaDanny.