Volunteering: the gift of time and enthusiasm
Giving Report 2020: Alumni Engagement
Alumna Meg Pryde (’74) came to Mount Allison from Montreal and as a student was a highly-engaged member of the Mount Allison community — earning the Frances S. Allison Award and a Gold A for her efforts. Fifty years later, she is still making an impact at the University and is committed to sharing the Mount Allison experience with future generations.
Now retired, Pryde spent 34 years teaching elementary school in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and even a few years in New Zealand and Australia. After her retirement, she began volunteering with Mount Allison’s Alumni Board, and for the past six years has focused on the areas of Reunion, Homecoming, and awards and nominations.
Pryde is a founding member of MANTRA (Mount Allison Network of Teachers for Recruitment and Admissions). The MANTRA program was created three years ago by the Alumni Board’s Student Recruitment Sub-Committee to support student recruitment. The goal was to increase the number of incoming students from Maritime high schools by increasing awareness of Mount Allison within these schools with the help of retired teachers in their home communities.
The program, which is currently focused on the Maritimes, has five founding volunteer members and two new members this year. The MANTRA members attend events such as high school fairs and visits with admissions counsellors; meet with prospective students, parents, and guidance counsellors; and attend graduation ceremonies to hand out scholarships and Mount Allison merchandise to future Mounties.
“It’s really about creating awareness of Mount Allison and helping students find the right place for them” Pryde says. “If students are looking at many universities, they need to know what is unique about Mount Allison because it has a lot to offer the right student. That is why the MANTRA program is important. My job is to say ‘I think you’ll like it there and here’s why.’”
Pryde was also part of the Alumni Mentorship Program for two years, mentoring two Mount Allison students who were aspiring teachers. She regularly attends Reunion and encourages others to return to the University to celebrate their Reunion years.
“Volunteering just involves time and enthusiasm,” she says.
Pryde says one way for alumni to help promote Mount Allison is simply to wear Mount Allison clothing from the Bookstore.
“Every time I wear Mount Allison clothing, I meet someone and make a connection,” she says. “It’s an easy way to volunteer.”
Pryde has chosen to give her time to Mount Allison over the years because of all that Mount Allison has given to her.
“If I was to look at my life, where I am today, so many opportunities have been afforded to me because of my time spent at Mount A,” she says. “I met my husband Rick at Mount A, had a great teaching career, and my lifelong Mount A friendships continue to bring joy and fulfillment to my life.”
If you would like to learn more about volunteering with the Mount Allison Alumni Office, you can connect with Alumni Communications & Volunteer Officer Mareika Dow at firstname.lastname@example.org.