B&E Young Professional Network

July 28, 2014


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B&E established a new group on July 1 to keep young alumni involved at the College.

The B&E Young Professional Network is a group of dedicated young alumni who support the philanthropic efforts of the College through meaningful contributions, which over time will create a legacy for the future of B&E. And those who join before June 30, 2015, will be considered charter members who have the opportunity to decide how the funds raised from the group are used to make a difference at the College.

For Bianca Mugnano, the group's first official member, ownership over the use of funds was a big part of what drew her in.

"I feel like the business school is home. I wanted to join something that I thought could directly impact the school, or directly affect Accounting, or a specific club. You can designate the funds to what you want it to go to – that was definitely one of the things I liked," said Mugnano, a staff accountant at Cherry Bekaert in Charlotte, North Carolina. Mugnano, a Fairmont, West Virginia, native, earned her bachelor's degree in Accounting in May 2012, completed the FAFE program that summer, and then graduated with her master's of public accounting in 2013.

Since heading south, Mugnano has made many friends through the WVU Alumni Association in Charlotte, but she's always looking for additional ways to properly water her West Virginia roots.

"I think (the B&E Young Professionals Network) will be a great way for those who move away after graduation to keep in touch, to see what's going on at the school and in the Morgantown area," she said. "I hope to meet more people in different markets or in different industries that I wouldn't have the opportunity to connect with otherwise. And, obviously, I look for any excuse to come back to West Virginia."

Mugnano loves her position at Cherry Bekaert and thanks her education at B&E for preparing her well for a successful career.

"I got a really good basis at WVU for the things I would be doing (in my career) and basic concepts behind accounting in general. After receiving a great education, I really think that it's important for (alumni) to come back and get involved."

Mugnano's sentiment regarding getting involved is exactly what B&E hopes to do in creating this new group.

"We're trying to get young alumni in the habit of engaging with the College, and trying to create something where they can be a part of an exclusive group," said Bonnie Anderson, Director of Alumni Relations.

Becoming a member of the Young Professionals Network allows folks to get involved with the B&E community while building their professional networks and enjoying exclusive perks. Incentives of joining the Young Professionals Network include recognition at alumni events, a graduate application fee waiver and free admittance to B&E's Economic Outlook Conferences, just to name a few.

"The biggest thing that I am passionate about," said Anderson, "is that the students here benefit – we all benefit – from the generosity of those who've gone before us. The professors we hire, the international trips (students) go on, the classrooms they sit in — it's all from someone's generous gift. Young alumni have contacts, they're in companies who are hiring. They can mentor students. This is about taking 22,000 young alumni and identifying the passionate ones who are stepping up to the plate and saying, "I want to be involved. I want to help out.'"

Anyone 45 and under can join the B&E Young Professionals Network. A minimum donation of $10 a month grants you access to the network of young and successful B&E graduates as well as membership benefits. You can become a lifetime member with a gift of $1,200 or more. Those who join before June 30, 2015, will have the ability to choose how the funds from the Young Professionals Network are used.

For more information, call 304-293-3652.