As a self-described “Wildcat for Life,” Alan grew up in Phoenix, Arizona and received his undergraduate degree in Middle East Studies from the University of Arizona. Although Janet grew up in Virginia and received her undergraduate degree at the University of Virginia, she is drawn to the campus’ energy and the energy of its students, faculty and staff. Both Alan and Janet feel strongly that the University of Arizona is a great institution worthy of their commitment as Co-Chairs of the Parents & Family Association (PFA).
The Only Place for Allison
Alan and Janet began their current affiliation with the UA when their daughter Allison fell in love with the campus while “tagging along” on her older sister’s visit. On her return visit senior year of high school, she knew the University was the only place for her. Alan states, “Beyond the beauty and reputation of the place, Allison noticed the unifying sense of community. She noticed that students were walking in twos and threes and had a connection to each other. At other places she visited, there were lots of students by themselves. She also noticed that almost everyone wore Arizona gear. They were proud of their school.” Although she had many possibilities on the east coast and elsewhere, The University of Arizona was the only school to which Allison applied.
Living in Fairfax Station, Virginia, and heading the Parents & Family Association’s Advisory Board in Tucson, Arizona may seem geographically incompatible, but the Steins have been involved with the PFA since Allison decided to attend the University. Signing on to host a Summer Send-Off for future UA students in the Virginia, DC, and Maryland area each year since Ally’s acceptance is only the beginning of the Stein’s commitment. The Steins also co-chaired the Student Recruiting and Retention Committee before their current role.
Giving Parents a Voice
The benefits the Parents & Family Association offer are what moved the Steins to join. “The Parents & Family Association gives parents a voice at the university and an opportunity to contribute to the well-being of not only their students, but all students. The grants contribute directly to student safety and quality of life programs, as well as programs that make students more keenly aware of career paths to follow. Additionally, PFA memberships keep parents aware of issues within the state legislature that may affect the university, and an outlet to voice their support or concern” explained Alan. In addition the Steins note that PFA provides a place where parents can go to have a myriad of questions answered. Alan states, “this is particularly valuable to parents from out-of-state like ourselves.”
The Steins have transferred into their new role with a strong sense of what they would like to accomplish. “ We would like to see the Parent & Family Association be part of a larger, collaborative process in making the university the best it can be. To that end, we want the numerous organizations on campus, as well as the staff, to be able to draw on us as enablers in successes of their various programs. PFA has a lot of talent and experience within the leadership and membership that can make a difference. Bottom line, Janet and I want PFA to be part of the calculus as the university moves forward.”