Hello from your friendly neighborhood BSC Alumni Association!
I’m Analise Smith-Hinkley, current President of the Berkeley Student Cooperative Alumni Association (the BSCAA) and an alum of Cloyne (2008) and Oscar Wilde (2008-2010). We’ve had a really fun and busy season connecting current alumni with each other and with current co-opers, so we wanted to share a few of those highlights to give you a sense of what we do with concrete examples.
Our Alumni Association wouldn’t exist without the BSC, and we’re grateful for the opportunity to work together to ensure that future generations of students are able to attend college thanks to the affordable housing we are able to provide. Both of our organizations have seen a lot of change in the past few years–the whole world has–but one of the nice developments to come out of this period of transformation is the collaboration we’ve fostered in that space; our two organizations have found new and innovative ways to come together and work as a team, and those mutual efforts are resulting in great things.
In 2022, to name a few examples of our work so far, we at the BSCAA:
- Put on a co-op graduation party for seniors leaving the houses that featured donations by Lagunitas Brewing Company and a keynote speech from Euclid alum Josh Miele, who was awarded a 2021 MacArthur Genius prize winner for his work in blind adaptive technology
- Hosted a Strawberry Creek Clean-up and Tour to raise awareness for environmental protection and preservation efforts (with a side of free donuts and coffee, of course)
- As part of our virtual Financial Literacy Workshop in conjunction with the Cooperative Center Federal Credit Union, offered a matching opportunity to students who wanted to open their first IRA
- Participated in prospective student events with UC Berkeley’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions
- Delivered study treats to individual co-op houses during finals week
- Supported the BSC with alumni presence at key events like the Central Office Meet & Greet and the Rochdale Block Party
- Allocated to the BSC $20,000 in emergency funds for them to use at their discretion for students in need
- Donated $2,500 to help raise awareness for Rochdale’s need to renegotiate their lease on fair terms
- Gave $1,750 to NASCO’s Black Equity Scholarships
We’re not stopping there though: we have alumni happy hours coming up this summer in New York, Los Angeles, and the Bay, and we’re planning Homecoming, our Annual Membership Meeting, a group outing to an As game, and our next Financial Literacy workshop for the fall. We’re examining our own infrastructure, working on improvements to our website and communications that allow us to be more inclusive and accessible so that we can properly reach alumni and students in a way that works for them. We are strategizing with the BSC to improve our mutual ability to keep you all up to date on current goings-on and upcoming opportunities for participation with regular social media, informative and engaging emails, and dedicated and intentional outreach.
If you are already a member, thank you so much; it’s thanks to you we are able to do all of this important work! And if you’re not yet, please consider joining our cooperative family as either an annual or lifetime member–we have a variety of tiers so you can choose which level works for you, including discounts for recent graduates.
And of course, if you’re interested in volunteering with us or attending an event, please don’t hesitate to reach out.
Analise Smith-Hinkley, BSCAA President