Tony Lavely '64 meets with "Students and Alumni of Yale" (STAY)
On one of the first sunny spring days in New Haven this year, Tony Lavely met with members of a new campus organization, named STAY (Students and Alumni of Yale). Steve Blum '74, the Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives for the Association of Yale Alumni (AYA), is the STAY-AYA liaison. Anna Marra, a graduate student in Italian Language and Literature, organized the meeting for STAY. The STAY mission statement reads:
The STAY mission reaches far beyond New Haven to shared interest groups (SIGs), Yale College classes, graduate and professional alumni associations, and regional Yale clubs around the world. Alumni provide the wisdom of educational, job, and life experience. Graduate and professional students offer career guidance to college students and energy to alumni. Undergraduates inject fresh perspectives and enthusiasm. STAY stands at the intersection of these talents and points the way for three Yale communities to form long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationships.
The STAY Facebook page posted the event and Tony's professional background and Yale ties. About two-dozen students gathered in Rose Alumni House for an informal two-hour meeting. About two-thirds were undergraduates and one-third were graduate students. There were even a couple of faculty members.
Lavely introduced his remarks by transposing the quotation attributed to a famous department-store magnate when asked about his advertising. Lavely's version was: "I guess you're here to get my advice. Maybe half of it is good ... I just don't know which half."
There followed a somewhat autobiographical series of Instagram-style images with a phrase of "advice" as a hashtag. Lavely drew heavily on the diversity (at least in post-graduate experiences) of his Yale Class of 1964. The students were duly impressed to hear the audio recordings of John F. Kennedy's speech after he received his Yale honorary degree in 1962: "Now I have the best of both worlds ... a Harvard education and a Yale degree." And you could hear a pin drop as they listened to the audio recording of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s prayer in Battell Chapel during graduation ceremonies in 1964: "All life is interrelated ... we are all part of an inescapable network of mutuality tied in a single garment of destiny." [Hear both audios below.]
Students came from a wide background of Yale experiences, but all seemed eager to learn about "life after Yale." Lavely observed, "I was struck by how entrepreneurial many of the students were." He added: "Many had already launched post-Yale ventures." With his encouragement, half a dozen students followed up with emails and phone calls to Lavely. "It was a most enlightening experience for me."
Listen to the audios ...
Here are a few of the posterboards used by Tony for the presentation ...