The Future Alumni of NEOMED (FAN) Club is open to all students enrolled in the Colleges of Graduate Studies, Medicine and Pharmacy. It is also home to some of the University’s biggest supporters. Second-year College of Medicine students April Enger and Katherine Wu – the club’s president and vice president, respectively – share their thoughts about the new student organization.
Tell us about the FAN Club.
KW: FAN Club is a group of students that serve as liaisons between alumni and the student body to seek out for networking, shadowing and research opportunities. We also can connect student organizations to alumni if they need speakers. It opens the door for even more student organization collaboration.
If alumni needs students to speak on behalf of the student body, we will do that, too. Sometimes we are invited to alumni events— for example, some of us went to the One Shining Evening Gala, where there was a special reception for alumni. I’ve even attended some alumni networking events, like an evening at Chander Kohli, M.D., and Karen Kohli’s house.
How did the FAN Club come about?
AE: We formed the FAN Club last year because we want students to think of themselves as future alumni and not just students. We hope to inspire students to get involved with NEOMED post-graduation.
How can the FAN Club benefit other students?
AE: As a member of the FAN Club, we get to meet people in the NEOMED alumni network on a more personal level. I recently had the opportunity to attend an alumni board meeting. It was really interesting because they talked about the future direction of NEOMED within the next five to ten years. It was like getting an inside look at the University.
If a student were interested in joining the FAN Club, what would you tell them?
KW: For me, being a part of the FAN Club is very practical. I’m not really good at doing the whole networking thing, like going up to people and presenting myself with an elevator speech, all while trying to be relatable at the same time. The FAN Club is a way to put myself out there. I now know I already have one connection and that’s being part of NEOMED. I’m using this as an opportunity to practice communicating my goals as a physician and as a student. Other students can, too.
AE: The FAN Club allows you to be a little more connected to alumni, so you can reach out and ask for help, to shadow and things like that. For example, if you’re reaching out to NEOMED [alumni] and you have some sort of leadership position in the club, you can say, “I’m interested in working with alumni and I have this connection with so and so, who referred me to you.”
I also think it’s important we reach out to alumni because they care about the students here a lot. NEOMED alumni want to help current students any way that they can, whether it is through monetary donations, attending events, and allowing students to shadow them.