Connecting Generations and Improving the College


Founded in 2015, the Haslam Young Alumni Board (HYAB) enlists alumni 40 years old or younger to support their alma mater. The HYAB links alumni to students, fosters a culture of giving, supports the Haslam College of Business’ goal of excellence in education and encourages Haslam’s young alumni community. The board currently has nearly 50 members and is continually growing.

Members of the HYAB have various responsibilities. Each member serves on one of four committees: executive, mentorship, engagement or philanthropy. Twice a year, HYAB members meet on campus to interact with college leaders, hear updates from departments, provide input on college initiatives and work toward their committee goals. HYAB regularly works with Haslam Student Engagement to connect members with current students in mentorship activities following the board meetings.

HYAB member Vincent Passafiume (HCB, ’07), director of airport operations customer service at United Airlines, serves on the engagement committee. “Our goal is to create meaningful opportunities for fellow board members to bring their real-world experiences back to the college in support of current students and faculty,” he says. “Being a member of the HYAB has helped me remain connected and give back to the college that did so much to prepare me for my future career.”

Elana Ladd (HCB, ’20), unit general manager designate at PepsiCo and HYAB member, also appreciates the opportunity to stay connected with her alma mater. “I love the mentorship, sense of community and loyalty HYAB provides and embodies,” she says. Ladd serves on the board’s executive committee, a group dedicated to improving the student experience at Haslam. “The executive committee is the voice of HYAB. It bridges the gap between alumni, the college and the students — and being part of that is an amazing feeling.”

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