Volunteer Spotlight: Young Alumni Advisory Board
We asked Kelly Wallace, a member of the Young Alumni Advisory Board, why she volunteers and stays engaged with the Northeastern community.
You were a women’s ice hockey student athlete and very involved on campus from speaking at orientation to organizing food drives. How did your Northeastern experience influence your career path and motivate you to volunteer and give back?
It all comes down to the opportunities given to me at Northeastern. For starters, I was awarded an athletic scholarship that changed my life. I was able to go to college and I am so humbled and grateful that Dave Flint believed in me and gave me the opportunity to represent the school. Additionally, the athletic department’s “open door policy” gave me a voice. I can’t tell you how rare it is to have a head athletic director with an open door for students to come in and chat about how we can create change and make the student-athlete experience better; all thanks to you, Peter Roby. Peter is a great mentor of mine; he has such class and integrity and you really feel he has the best interest for the student-athlete community.
You leave Northeastern a better person than you came in. I had so many people in my corner rooting for me, some of who I barely knew. But that’s what’s so special about Northeastern. There is this sense of community even though it’s a large school. Whether I was battling on the ice or trying to succeed in the classroom, people were helping me along the way. It’s the kind of thing that has a lasting impact, builds character, and motivates me to give back and volunteer with the alumni community.
What do you do in Boston? What do you like to do in your free time?
I’m an analyst at a private equity firm that invests in privately-held technology businesses, called Spring Lake Equity Partners. In my free time, I explore new restaurants with my significant other and enjoy playing tennis, squash, and golf.
What was your favorite event or program at Northeastern?
Within the athletic department, my favorite program was the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). It’s a group that provides leadership opportunities to student-athletes who come together to encourage participation in university programs, and promote personal development within the student-athlete experience. It was a great platform for me to implement new ideas for the athletic program: ie. student-athlete ropes at graduation, partnerships with outside NPOs like Playworks Boston and Team IMPACT, and the push for a smoke-free campus. The program gave me the ability to make a positive change outside the classroom and sports field.
For alumni looking to expand and utilize their Northeastern Network, where do you recommend they start?
There’s no wrong answer here but I’d say to self-reflect. What gets you up in the morning? What are you passionate about? What motivates you? From there, you’ll be able to find a specific OAR event or program. Explore the website. The cool thing about Northeastern is if there isn’t an event or program that fits your jive, you can make one! Take a risk, there’s no downside to trying something out and chances are you’ll likely meet someone else at the event who has similar interests as you.
FUN FACT: What is one food you wouldn’t want to give up?
That’s easy, people that know me well, know that I love donuts. My favorite is a powdered donut, crunchy on the outside doughy on the inside.
FUN FACT: What advice did you get that was the most rewarding?
The best advice I’ve ever gotten was from my advisor in high school: Listen well.
LinkedIn: Kelly Wallace
Or find me in the press box at Matthews Area watching the Women’s Varsity Hockey team, my favorite seat in the house!