If you ask international graduates to name one person at West Virginia University who helped make their time at the University memorable, you are likely to hear Dr. Tom Sloane’s name mentioned – a lot.
For more than 34 years, Sloane has been a driving force behind WVU’s international outreach, serving in numerous roles with multicultural and international programs. As executive director of international outreach in the Division of Student Life, he packs his bags and spends much of his time traveling to countries all over the world where he engages alumni, assists with student recruitment and helps to establish a stronger WVU global footprint.
Alan and Lisa Zuccari have witnessed the fruition of Sloane’s hard work and have established the Tom Sloane International Outreach Fund to honor their friend. The $25,000 gift will provide opportunities for the WVU Alumni Association to focus on enhancing outreach programs and establishing chapters in key areas around the world.
“Our international students and graduates make our campus better,” said Mr. Zuccari. “The cultural diversity of a college campus helps to create a positive learning environment where students, faculty and others can gain new perspectives. Tom has been an important part of the effort to significantly grow and enhance our relationships with our alumni living abroad, while bringing more students to campus. We have a tremendous respect for the work he has done, and this gift is the first step in ensuring that our international relationships with alumni continue to grow and thrive.”
The WVU Alumni Association currently has six international chapters in China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan, and Thailand. During the next few years, the association plans to establish additional chapters in the Middle East and other key areas where the University has a significant alumni base.
Each year, graduates living and working abroad attend college fairs on behalf of the University to bring students to WVU. They also come together for networking and social activities, including picnics and dinners, while staying connected through social media and other communication.
“West Virginia University alumni show an incredible loyalty and passion for their alma mater, even when they are thousands of miles away. We are grateful that Alan and Lisa recognize the importance of the contributions our international graduates make to WVU and the work we do here at the Alumni Association,” said Stephen Douglas, president and CEO, WVU Alumni Association.
Dr. Sloane, who has worked for the University for more than 35 years, was honored over the weekend as Outstanding Alumnus Award as part of 2014 Homecoming festivities.
The $25,000 gift was made in conjunction with A State of Minds: The Campaign for West Virginia’s University. The $1 billion comprehensive campaign being conducted by the WVU Foundation on behalf of the University runs through December 2017. For more information about WVU Alumni Association giving opportunities, including contributions to the Tom Sloane International Outreach Fund, contact Nicole Riggleman at 304-293-4731.
CONTACT: Tara Curtis, WVU Alumni Association
Follow @WVUToday on Twitter.