New Alumni Board Established at KGI
Election of Keck Graduate Institute's first Alumni Board of Directors marked the official beginning of a mutually-beneficial relationship between KGI and its graduates.
The board's purpose will be to improve communications among all KGI stakeholders, provide networking opportunities for alumni and students and help with fundraising initiatives for the institution. It also will give alumni an opportunity for input into curriculum and faculty development.
The board will meet at the end of January when committee chairs will report on the progress they have made and their goals for the future.
Eleven alumni participated in the board's first meeting in November which was held to adopt a mission statement, establish a board structure and nominate the first slate of officers.
Singleton said the time was ripe for getting an alumni board started. KGI's strategic plan called for creation of such a board once the school had 250 graduates, a milestone that was reached last year.
Singleton has been meeting with alumni over the past year and a half getting their input and confirming their interest in starting a board. The first meeting was open to any alumnus who wanted to participate. Eight attended in person and three were present on a conference call.
"It was so rewarding to work with this very capable group of alumni," Singleton said. "Their enthusiasm and the fact that they want to have a strong relationship with the institution and want to support the advancement of the institution were tremendous."
Newly-elected president Leva is a regional sales associate for Althea Technologies in the San Francisco Bay Area selling manufacturing services to biotech companies.
He also is involved in starting two companies. He is co-founder of a drug delivery company that is in the early stages of trying to raise capital. His second venture, a "craigslist" for the biotech industry, hasn't yet launched.
Leva decided to get involved in the alumni board as a way to give back to the faculty and the institution that provided him with such a valuable education.
"Participating on the board is a pretty good way of doing that at this point," Leva said. "This is a good opportunity to provide the support and input that can really shape the future of education at KGI."
As an entrepreneur, Leva said the most important things he took away from KGI were how to write a business plan and the opportunity to talk with actual venture capitalists.
He also learned valuable lessons that he uses on the job, where he's required to organize a lot of moving pieces such as internal personnel, external clients, the technical components of the job and contract negotiation.
"There's no way I could do those all efficiently without my education at KGI," Leva said.
- By Elaine Regus
Educating the future leaders of the bioscience industry, Keck Graduate Institute (KGI) offers an interdisciplinary graduate education through its Master of Bioscience (MBS) degree program and its PhD program in Applied Life Sciences. Using team-based learning and real-world projects, KGI's innovative curriculum seamlessly combines applied life sciences, bioengineering, bioethics and business management. KGI also has a robust research program concentrating on the translation of basic discoveries in the life sciences into applications that can benefit society. KGI is a member of The Claremont Colleges, located in Claremont, California.
Keck Graduate Institute of Applied Life Sciences is dedicated to education and research aimed at translating into practice, for the benefit of society, the power and potential of the life sciences.