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Volunteer Spotlight: Young Alumni Advisory Board

We asked Pete Petrin, a member of the Young Alumni Advisory Board, why he volunteers and stays engaged with the Northeastern community.

How did your Northeastern experience impact your motivation to volunteer and give back? 
Northeastern continues to influence my career path and community passion each and every day. Through leadership experiences at the Center of Community Service and student organizations, such as Peace through Play and Generation Citizen, Northeastern helped me discover a lifelong passion in the field of education. I joined a cohort of Northeastern graduates who joined Teach for America immediately after graduation, and my experiences teaching high school math reignited my fascination with statistics, shaping my current work in leveraging data analytics to support students and schools. Even now, I’m a double Husky currently pursuing an online M.Ed. in Learning Analytics at Northeastern, an innovative program designed to explore how the tools and tactics from business analytics can be leveraged in our communities to support learning and schools in the 21st century. I give my time (and money when I can) to Northeastern in hopes that the next generation of Huskies can continue to take advantage of the incredible resources and opportunities that the university provides (and still provides) to me.

What do you do in Washington D.C.? How do you stay connected to Northeastern outside of Boston? What do you like to do in your free time?
I currently work as a data analyst with the D.C. Public Charter School Board, the authorizing board for a community of charters that serve nearly half of all D.C. public school students. This is a recent career change for me, going from teaching students how to do math to teaching machines how to do math. This was facilitated in part by a great experience with the Level analytics bootcamp at Northeastern last fall; I’m incredibly excited to be doing this work. It’s also a thrill coming to a new city and discovering the vibrant alumni community here in D.C. In just the past month, I’ve attended coffee conversations, happy hours, tours, shows at the Kennedy Center, and more here in D.C. with Northeastern friends old and new, and we’re having our co-op welcome dinner in just a couple days! In my free time, I like to dominate Fitbit competitions, so if you’re ever in the District and looking for a walking tour, look me up.

What was your favorite event this past year? What is the main role of the YAAB?
The YAAB aims to be a resource for connecting young alumni with continued opportunities to engage with the university. Our Alumni Relations staff and our regional and international communities are working hard to sustain our university connections across the nation and the globe, from nostalgic programs to professional dinners and dialogues (I’m looking forward to planning a Dinner Circuit event for educators in D.C. this fall!). YAAB members aim to support this work and unite these efforts in a cohesive, dynamic experience that will allow young alumni to accelerate their careers, communities and ideas.

For alumni looking to connect with the Northeastern network, where do you recommend they start?
Northeastern is a community that never stops learning; through our experiences, dialogues and reflections, we are lifelong learners committed to thinking about problems in new ways and uncovering innovative solutions. For me, programs like the Lifelong Learning On Demand and the Circuits program have been a great opportunities to expand my depth of knowledge in my professional field, and events such as Beyond the Brew and Homecoming have allowed me to stay consistently connected with lifelong friends. There’s no one “right way” to get started in the alumni community; find an event that intrigues you and join us. And if you can’t find the program you’re looking for, reach out to your local alumni community or the YAAB and we can help you put your programming ideas into action!

FUN FACT: What are you most afraid of?
Complacency – my time at Northeastern provided me with a relentless desire to innovate and explore new pathways, so I’m always conscious about keeping that drive. Also, snakes.

FUN FACT: If you could go anywhere in the world where would you go?
Tokyo, Japan – I did a dialogue there during my senior year and I’m dying to go back. Amazing people, beautiful landscapes, fascinating culture.

Contact Information
Twitter: @Pete_Petrin
LinkedIn: Pete Petrin