As Montclair State University's first woman president, Susan A. Cole ’62 led the institution through two decades of impressive growth
This past year was a testament to the beauty that can bloom when we nurture our resilient foundation. Around the world, alumnae volunteers have stepped up in myriad ways.
- Barnard Alumnae Circles bridged physical boundaries by connecting students and alumnae in our global community through nearly 50 subcommunities of virtual networking groups based on region, industry, affinity, and identity.
- In addition to their peer-to-peer fundraising, Class Agent volunteers reached out to each and every incoming first-year student this past summer to make sure they felt a warm welcome, even from afar.
- More than 900 alumnae professionals have participated in the Barnard Connect program through Beyond Barnard so far, serving as virtual career mentors not only to students but also to their fellow alumnae.
In celebration of National Volunteer Month (April), meet just a few of the countless alumnae volunteers who continue innovating what it means to keep the Barnard community connected in an ever-evolving world.
RHODA BERLEY ’57
“My Barnard family has widened considerably to my delight. Volunteering at the College has given me the opportunity to ‘give back’ and say thank you for the great education.”
As a Class Agent and fundraising volunteer for more than 25 years, Rhoda has been able to build connections with her peers, which became especially vital during the COVID-19 pandemic. She has helped raise considerable funding from her class and helped to engage both alumnae and students over the past year.
WANDA COLE-FRIEMAN ’94
Beyond Barnard Panelist, Class Agent
“Helping my class raise funds to support our current students and faculty is rewarding because you know the funds will contribute to much needed programs to support our future alumnae in times of need.”
In addition to her work as a Class Agent fundraiser, Wanda served as a virtual event panelist for Beyond Barnard in September, sharing insight about her professional path and advice with current students on the importance of women in healthcare today, especially during COVID-19.
RONA WILK ’91
Class President, Class Agent, AABC Reunion Committee Chair, Awards Committee
“Volunteering for Barnard has been especially important during the pandemic, as something to stave off isolation. And boredom — you can’t be bored volunteering for Barnard!”
In her role as chair of the Reunion Committee, Rona helped bring to life Reunion Reimagined, an engaging virtual experience — the first of its kind at Barnard — that successfully captured the heart and energy we look forward to every year during this weekend of milestone celebrations.
PEGGY WANG ’90
Founding President, Barnard Club of Taiwan, Regional Ambassador, Alumnae Circles Host, Class Agent
“Through all the activities that I do, I am just glad to create a bond and community for alumnae and current students.”
As a resident of Taipei, Peggy brought the global alumnae community together as an Alumnae Circles host, helping to support students who left campus at the start of the pandemic and deepening the local Barnard bonds.
JORDAN HOLLIS ’16
Beyond Barnard Volunteer
“It has been great coming together with others to support current students in these trying times. I am reminded that Barnard is more than just your four years on campus. It’s a lifetime of support.”
Jordan participated as a Beyond Barnard volunteer, helping students and her peers navigate remote career exploration when traditional professional development opportunities were put on pause.
KARLA JAY ’68, Ph.D.
Alumnae Circles Host, Event Panelist
“Barnard’s launch of the Alumnae Circles created the perfect community service opportunity for me. The focus on LGBTQ alumnae and students meshed perfectly with my interest in strengthening intergenerational dialogue, understanding, and ties.”
In addition to hosting an Alumnae Circle that connected and empowered LGBTQ+ alumnae and students, Karla reflected on what it means to be resilient through challenging times as a virtual event panelist.
THANK YOU TO ALL OF OUR ALUMNAE VOLUNTEERS. THE BARNARD COMMUNITY COULD NOT GROW WITHOUT YOU.
To hear from more volunteers and to get involved yourself with the Barnard community, visit