Willamette University

The Compass Turns One

In March, The Compass — Willamette’s online system for alumni — turned one year old. In those 12 months, it has changed the web presence of alumni relations in some interesting ways. Here’s an update.


To start, 2,899 users have registered at The Compass, which we think is wonderful. Our calendar year-end goal was 2,000, based on projections from the industry experts who developed our software. With your help, we exceeded that by about 35 percent.


Two months ago, we launched a Facebook application that allows users to open The Compass from within their own Facebook account, meaning that they can reconnect with other alumni without jumping to a new website. We decided at the outset that we wanted to offer tools that would complement the social media channels alumni were already using (rather than asking them to learn and use a whole new platform). The Facebook application is a good example, and feedback has been enthusiastic.

Career Network

One of the most important functions of The Compass is tied to the Career Network. We use The Compass to house our career advisor profile information and the career advisor search tool, and many of you have already volunteered with the program (see page 34 for more details about the career advisor program).

Event Registration

Last year’s Reunion Weekend showed us that the event registration tool is crucial. We received feedback from alumni who wanted to see a cleaner registration form, so this year the reunion registration is even more intuitive.


Most alumni users log in to The Compass so they can look up their classmates, submit class notes or update their own biographical information. This has proven to be one of the easiest things to do (and helpful to us). Success of The Compass ultimately depends on your use of it. Because of that, we owe you, our users, thanks for making this a worthwhile and useful tool. As always, we’re open to suggestions and feedback.

Visit The Compass at willamette.edu/alumni/compass. Happy navigating.

Travel Program: Russia, Golf and Egypt Trips Round Out 2010


Thanks in part to an improving stock market and lower prices, the 2010 travel year will finish stronger than 2009. By the time The Scene reaches readers, there may be a few spots left for the Ashland, Eastern Oregon, Russia, Wisconsin and Egypt trips. If you are interested in any of these trips, it is best to make your deposit quickly. The Russian River Cruise, Sept. 2–12, promises to be an excellent opportunity to see Moscow, St. Petersburg and points in-between. River cruising is a wonderful way to travel — while unpacking only once. Over 20 Bearcat travelers have deposited so far.


Sept. 19–24 will be a special opportunity for golfers to play the fantastic Whistling Straits course in Kohler, Wis., which will be the site of the men’s PGA tournament just a few weeks before our arrival. Three other nationally known courses will help provide a once-in-a-lifetime golf experience. This one is filling up quickly.

The finale for our travel year will be Egypt: Land of the Pharaohs. This is truly a “bucket list” destination, and we have an outstanding tour package that runs from Nov. 7–22 and includes an option for five additional days in Jordan and Petra. Almost 20 deposits have been received for this trip. If you are interested, give us a call at 503-370-6746 or email jbooth@willamette.edu.

– Jim Booth ’64

To learn more online, visit willamette.edu/alumni/travel.

Reunion is Coming!

Some things change — and some things stay the same. Come back to campus this September to see what’s new at Willamette and rekindle those friendships and favorite memories.

Classes being honored this year:

  • 1950 60th reunion
  • 1955 55th reunion
  • 1960 50th reunion
  • 1965 45th reunion
  • 1970 40th reunion
  • 1975 35th reunion
  • 1980 30th reunion
  • 1985 25th reunion
  • 1990 20th reunion
  • 2000 10th reunion
  • 2010-2005 Young alumni

Festivities will include class receptions, wine tasting from alumni vintners, faculty lectures, campus tours, sporting events, Greek house tours, field trips to learning laboratories, and a lot of reminiscing and storytelling.

Find more information online at willamette.edu/alumni.

Alumni Events

We’re revamping our alumni events around the country and are looking for volunteers to help with hosting and organizing. If you’d like to get involved — whether you live in San Francisco, Dallas, Denver, New York, Boston or anywhere else — we’d love to hear from you.

Contact Amy Erekson Varga, director of reunions and alumni events, at aerekson@willamette.edu or 503-370-6975. For an up-to-themoment list of events in the works, visit willamette.edu/alumni/events.

Sample of Current Activities:

Regional Alumni Reception
New York, N.Y.
April 21

You’re Doing What With Your Degree?
Portland, Ore.
May 20

Team Willamette Service Event at the Oregon Food Bank
Portland, Ore.
June 5