Justin Chapman | Staff Writer
Graduation season is upon Taylor, and as seniors move on and prepare to embark on their new lives outside the university, Taylor hopes to increase the number of alumni involved. Not only this, but Taylor wants to see more financial support from alumni.
The man taking on a big role in this campaign is Brad Yordy, the new Executive Director of Alumni Relations and Parent Relations. Vice President for University Advancement Rex Bennett said Yordy possesses excellent administrative understanding and skills.
"He's a very articulate guy, loves Taylor and he isn't afraid of a challenge," Bennett said. "He's going to take on the role of making our alumni programs and our parent programs more involved, more robust than they've ever been in order to accommodate our efforts and facilitate our efforts in the campaign."
Taylor is in the process of organizing a major fundraising campaign. For the university to receive enough money to move towards future goals, it is going to be at least two to three times bigger than past campaigns, Bennett said.
Yordy, a 2005 Taylor alumnus, grew up in Upland. As a child, he spent the night at professors' houses, had professors as little league coaches and is overall familiar with the surrounding community.
Before Yordy accepted this position, he worked in university advancement at Taylor for four years and then worked as the athletic director at Eastbrook High School.
With three kids - ages nine, eight and six - holding this job gives him the opportunity to be around more in the evening with his family as opposed to the athletic director position.
"My wife has been working in MAHE, she finished her doctoral program while teaching in MAHE as well," Yordy said. "With her teaching load, then with my job out at the school, (we) thought, you know that this might be a great fit for both sides."
Specifically, Yordy will help plan events off and on campus. There will be more alumni meetings around the country and a more robust alumni travel program with the plan to have Taylor alumni travel together and reconnect, Bennett said.
Taylor wants their alumni to remember the community they had as students and a trip last summer already occurred with that goal in mind. Around 35 Taylor alumni with friends went to Israel for 10 days, Bennett said.
"We've got alumni outside the institution that have a wealth of resources, abilities, gifts, information that would be a tremendous resource for the students," Yordy said. "So, part of the position is connecting those dots, but (also) trying to keep all the alumni as engaged as they can."
While Yordy is excited about what his future holds at Taylor, there are some aspects of the job he will need to get used to.
However, the staff in place will help him get accommodated to his new position, Yordy said.
"I'm stepping into a little bit of the unknown," Yordy said. "There are a lot of pieces of it that are very familiar, very natural. But, then there's definitely going to be components to it that are new. So, with any job, there's a learning curve with it."