Vanderbilt University Alumni Association Board Director Corey Ponder, BS’07, is a model of alumni engagement and knows firsthand how his involvement is both personally fulfilling and important to Vanderbilt. He is a consistent donor who volunteers for the San Francisco Vanderbilt Chapter, CoRPs, Reunion, Student-Alumni programs and the GOLD Challenge, and serves as a social media ambassador and on the GOLD Council.
“From the first time I stepped foot on the grounds as a student, I felt like Vanderbilt catalyzed my professional and personal growth,” says Ponder. “Whether it was the flexibility the university provided for creating and participating in student groups, the diversity of classes, or the accessibility of the staff and administrators, Vanderbilt created the environment of an elite educational experience while being approachable and accessible along my journey from freshman to graduate.
“The opportunities to study abroad and to intern in Washington, D.C., defined my vision for what I wanted to do with my education and, 10 years later, my career has grown in ways that I can trace back to inspiration from those moments. That is why I now give back and volunteer my time to Vanderbilt. I want to pay it forward so that students who step foot on the same lawn can have a similar experience, and so the university can continue to grow and thrive.”