Staff of TKE - Pete Dawson
Alumni Engagement Director
INDIANAPOLIS - In the summer of 2010, a photographer named Brandon began taking photos of thousands of New Yorkers. His goal was to put a face to the image that people had of the different New York boroughs and its inhabitants. As if overnight, Humans of New York became a worldwide sensation.
We looked at the Humans of New York project and realized we faced a similar challenge. Many individuals outside of the Fraternity's immediate points of contact do not truly know who is answering the phone, posting on social media or handling various tasks at the organizational level. For that reason, we are excited to launch a new edition of "Staff of TKE." Every two weeks we will highlight a new individual on TKE's Professional Staff.
Name: Pete Dawson
Position: Alumni Engagement Director
Chapter: New York Institute of Technology (Xi-Gamma)
What does today mean for TKE nation and you in particular?
September 11, 2015 is a day of remembrance. It is a day to reflect on the friends and family we have lost. It is a day to reflect on a loss of collective innocence. It is a day to remind to learn to teach. This year's incoming freshman class is the first since September 11 that wasn't in school that morning. The majority were only 4 years old that day. They have lived their entire lives in the shadow of those events. They have only known a nation at war.
Does that re-enforce the significance for friends, family and fraternity.
Each day we need to make time for those around us. In New York, September 11, 2001, was a beautiful clear day. People went to work, scattered from point A to point B not giving much thought to things that weren't right in front of them. Within hours everything would change. It is important to appreciate the significance of those we love and care about each day. Make time for someone else. Call an old friend, get the point of view of someone you don't understand, make it a point to let people know they matter every day.
This is your first year serving as Alumni Engagement Director. How has the year been?
I have volunteered my time for TKE and spent time on the Professional Staff because I believe in the core values and mission of Tau Kappa Epsilon. We have an organization that has always been open to all regardless of race, religion, or national origin. It was the belief of the founders and formative members of Tau Kappa Epsilon that being inclusive and showing understanding would put our members in a unique position to help bring settlement to the great social issues of the day. Now, 116 years later, nothing has changed. We have people from all corners of the world that call each other brothers and work together to make the world a better place. I agreed to be Alumni Engagement Director to further our mission as an organization. We need more alumni to get involved as mentors and advisors. We need more people who can volunteer a few minutes of their time each day to make TKE stronger. I have met many alumni this year that believe Fraternity for Life is more than something we say.
What trips do you have on the horizon?
I am heading to Minneapolis in two weeks. I will be on the west coast from San Francisco to Seattle. I'll be in Rochester NY in early October. The trip I am looking most forward to though is actually the closest to home. On September 26th 2015 I'll be walking across the Brooklyn Bridge with hundreds of other Tekes in support of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.
What's the last word?
The last word here is Get Involved. There is so much need out there in the world. Everyone can make a difference. Everyone can make the world a better place. Don't waste your time on the things outside of your circle of influence. Spend time on the things and the people you can impact. Take the time to understand those around you before you make assumptions. I've been fortunate to meet people from all over the world. At the end of the day most of them want to see their friends and family happy and healthy. We need to spend time on the things we have in common not those that drive us apart.
The next edition of "Staff of TKE" will appear Friday, September 25.
For more information, please contact: