June 3, 2010
Writer: Writer: Ryan Kunz

Brigham Young University-Idaho alumni and students have a new tool to connect with one another-BYUI Connect, a new online career and social network found at www.byuiconnect.org.

The purposes of the site, according to Alumni and Community Connections Director Steve Davis, are to help current students form networks with alumni in their chosen fields, to help alumni reconnect with old classmates, and to provide a place for news of the Alumni Association.

"BYUI Connect assists alumni and students as they seek to build their networks and associate with others who love the university and wish to share the Spirit of Ricks," Davis said.

Primarily, BYUI Connect will serve as a tool for the BYUI Mentoring Network, a group of current students, alumni, campus employees and friends of the university who provide career, academic and personal support. Volunteers in the Mentoring Network connect with students to provide career advice, compare notes, and point the way to job opportunities.

Henry J. Eyring, Advancement vice president, emphasized the role that alumni can play in helping students make the transition from the academic to the organizational world. "Alumni know firsthand what it's like to take a degree and turn it into something you can make a living with," Eyring said. "This site is the key to passing on that knowledge."

A directory on the site includes all alumni and students and displays basic contact information, making it easy for alumni and students to connect with one another. In addition, users can post blogs, get RSS feeds, display YouTube videos, and link to other accounts such as Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. They can also keep updated on the latest news from the Alumni Association, including upcoming reunions and other events.

The key to making the network successful, Davis said, is participation. "This is a powerful tool, but it will be only as useful as we have alumni who join in," he said.