A group of alumni and students were educated in the ways of networking through Alan E. Hall’s life story on the powers of maintaining a good network. The Young Alumni Association at Weber State University sponsored the presentation.
The Young Alumni Association is a subgroup of the Alumni Association at WSU. Its mission is to involve students of WSU within 10 years of their attendance to become involved in current affairs.
Justin Berube, a psychology graduate of WSU, is currently the president of the Young Alumni Association.
“We try to meet the needs of our demographic,” Berube said. “This discussion on networking is an opportunity because most of us need help building our network. Alan Hall is a great person to learn networking habits from.”
Hall is a graduate of WSU and has been involved with University Affairs for the last 30 years.
“My experience in networking has been the driving factor for my success,” Hall said. “My life has been a circle of networking that all of you could take away a valuable lesson on the importance of being networked and helping others network too.”
Hall discussed the major events within his lifetime that have built up his network, as he is now a venture capitalist, former CEO of MarketStar, president of the Board of Trustees for WSU and heavily involved within his church organization.
“My mother was the first one to notice my importance and network on my behalf,” Hall said. “She found my first job with a family member at the age of 16 and, after that fell through, another job with a church friend. I was able to work there all through high school. I was known as ‘Joyce’s boy’, but that is all right, because she was my starting network.”
Hall emphasized that family and friends are the first line of networking. The second is affiliations gained through the university; Hall received a job as president of Ballet West through the help of an old professor at WSU.
“I had no idea how to run a ballet company, but this professor saw within me a drive and ability to do anything I put my mind to,” Hall said. “So, after talking to my wife about this opportunity, I took the job because I thought, ‘If this professor thinks that I can, then I sure need to try.'”
The third important factor to networking is the idea of reciprocity, Hall said.
“I have friends all over the world, and I must ask myself, ‘How can I help others since I have been helped so much?'” he said. “The idea is that my dear mother helped me so much in life along with friends and colleagues, that I need to always find a way to give back in any way that I can.”
Hall discussed the take-home message with audience members, allowing questions with feedback. He summed up the factors of networking to be family, friends, respect and reciprocity. The association thanked Hall for his presentation and continued support of WSU students and events.
The Young Alumni Association is always looking for alumni to come speak and bring a positive message for the members. Victoria Thompson, prior 2010-11 student body president at WSU, is a member of the Young Alumni Association Council, and said she wants all to participate and be enriched.
“We have events that will benefit the presenter as well as the audience,” Thompson said. “We also do fun things, like the golf tournament held in early May, to give back to the community through scholarships for WSU students.”
More information about the Young Alumni Association is available at https://www.facebook.com/WSUYoungAlumni.