Macaulay-O'Sullivan Award Winners 2012

The Bridge Network Program, an initiative of the Saint John Chapter of the Associated Alumni, brings alumni mentors together with students to provide experiential learning opportunities, career advice and professional development workshops.  A grassroots program that was lunched just a year ago, the Bridge Network builds on a historically great relationship between the campus and Saint John, strengthening these bonds by connecting students, alumni and the wider community.

The program is a vehicle for exceptional learning experiences for students, particularly in relation to the off-campus working world.  Alumni Advisors help students set career goals and paths; give them industry and field knowledge; share successes and setbacks, and what was learned from those; and act as a resource to help ease the transition from school to the working world.  Through these activities, the wider community gets to know our students and their abilities, something that may help to stem the tide of outward migration from New Brunswick. 

Some 150 students and 70 advisors have joined the program so far, which is expected to increase as the online database comes online this fall.  Best of all, this program is highly transferable so there is a good chance it can be implemented in Fredericton and other parts of the province. 

Wrote one alumnus, “I believe strongly that this program is very innovative in supporting our students in becoming productive and permanent members (and leaders) of the Saint John community by connecting them to our alumni.  Having business leaders, doctors, scientists and other professionals link with students is an incredible way of establishing links to the community.”

Those who made this project successful were Mary Duffley, Alumni Program Manager and her team of volunteer Larry Hachey and professor of business Cathie Hurley.  Robert MacKinnon, Vice-President Saint John, though not technically eligible to receive this award, was also actively supportive of this initiative.