A new study away opportunity for student-athletes will be offered this year as a Maymester course in Los Angeles. The course, Networking and the Art of the Pitch, was developed by Rachel Dubrofsky, chair of communication and rhetorical studies (CRS)…
Maithreyee (Mai) Dubé ’96, ’16, G’17, Inaugural Staff Representative to the Board of Trustees, Aspires to Lead and Serve
This past fall, the University’s Board of Trustees welcomed its first-ever staff representative. Over a two-year term, Mai Dubé, manager of enrollment services in the Institute for Veterans and Military Families, will use her voice, perspective and experiences as a staff member to help inform the University’s implementation of strategic objectives in support of its mission and vision.
Syracuse University News interviewed Dubé about her experiences serving on the Board so far and what she hopes to accomplish in this role.
01What interested you about the opportunity to serve on the Board as a staff member?
As an alumna of Syracuse University, I have enjoyed my role as a staff member. My walks around campus and sights of buildings constantly bring back memories of my undergraduate and graduate years. Over the past 10 years, I have seen several ways staff is encouraged to participate, such as Fast Forward committees, SEM 100 (now First-Year Seminar 101) and campus commitments. Each time, I raised my hand to participate and to applaud every effort to include staff.
In the same manner, I wanted to both applaud the Board’s request to include a staff representative and continue to participate. Having been selected as the inaugural staff member, I get to serve my colleagues in my favorite way—by building something which will last—and do it together.
02From your perspective, why is it important to have staff representation on the Board?
Our mission states that faculty and staff collaborate to support student success. It makes sense to include the voices of staff alongside dean, faculty, graduate and undergraduate student representatives.
Over the years, I have worked with faculty, staff and students to impact student experience; we have worked together to solve problems; we have planned together to celebrate. This role feels natural.
03What has your experience with the Board been like so far?
It is wonderful to see, hear and experience firsthand how involved the Board members are. And that the Board is made up of alumni, business and community leaders who care—as demonstrated by their questions, conversation and camaraderie.
A perspective I did not expect to have myself when listening to committee and representative reports, and participating as a staff representative, is that of a parent and a manager of staff. I know there are several colleagues across campus who are in the same shoes as I am. This makes me that much more committed to listening to these insights.
04How do you think your participation on the Board and as a member of the Enrollment and the Student Experience Committee can help improve Syracuse University as an institution?
It is important to have staff representation on a committee about student experience. Staff play a critical role, starting with responding to interest in a degree, through the application and admission process and all the way to graduation. As a staff representative on this committee, I am able to participate in conversations and listen for opportunities to contribute positively to the student experience.
05What have been some of the most exciting initiatives or dialogues you have been a part of so far in this role?
To be selected was exciting! Listening to personal stories from alumni as they were initiated as Board members at their alma mater was meaningful, making me reflect on my undergraduate experience. Having Board members approach me to thank me for my authentic first report was unexpected and that made the inaugural Board meeting more personal.
There is much more to do—starting with finding time to speak with my peers across campus so I can prepare reports to the board with a wider range of voices. I am going to be most happy with those connections and dialogues.