UCMAA Board Member Christopher Abrescy

Degree: Management/BS/2009

Occupation: Alumni relations specialist, UC Merced

Current residence: Merced

Board Term: October 2011 to October 2013


Why did you return to work at your alma mater in the alumni office?
I was seeking an opportunity to come back home to UC Merced, but also a career path that would allow me to utilize what I learned both in and out of the classroom. Being presented the chance to work with current students and alumni in a creative manner is a challenging but exciting opportunity.

Serving as the alumni relations specialist, I can call upon my past experiences as a student as well as an alumnus of UC Merced to provide ways to prepare students for their role as alumni beyond their years on campus.

My firsthand experiences as an undergraduate student in building, launching and executing new organizations, programs and events will assist me as we continue to do the same for both the growing student and alumni base.

What are you most excited for about this position?

I am most excited for the opportunity to be back on campus daily, interacting with staff members, students and alumni who are passionate about being a part of our unique university; creatively connecting current students and alumni together; and educating people about what it means to be an alum of UC Merced.

I look forward to continuing to build and develop the leadership of the Student Alumni Association, composed of current students, and currently the largest student-member-based organization on campus.

Please share your experience during your transition between being a UC Merced student to being a UC Merced alumni:

I found there was a sense of responsibility to not only stay connected with the campus but to find various ways to give back. For the three years after graduation, I volunteered my time to coach the Recreation and Athletics Department’s Bobcat Martial Arts team and host the annual Golden Bobcat Cup martial arts tournament, as well as serve on the UC Merced Alumni Association Board. I have been grateful for opportunities to stay connected with school while partaking in activities that I enjoy.

Your advice to fellow alumni:

Staying informed and involved with your alma mater beyond your years on campus can continue to benefit your personal and professional growth. Staying connected with fellow alumni, professors and staff members can lead to untapped opportunities. Career Services are still available in assisting you with your job searches in your respective regions post-graduation. Furthermore, if you choose to support UC Merced as a philanthropic alum, you will set an example for current students about the importance of giving back to the place that provided you with an education.

However, this does not necessarily have to come in the form of a monetary gift. Giving back could mean serving as an ambassador in your area, starting a new area alumni chapter or coming back to campus to volunteer or speak on your personal experiences.

Student/alumni activities: Martial Arts Club at UC Merced; ASUCM; Inter Club Council; and head coach for the Recreation and Athletics Department Bobcat Martial Arts Team.

Board committees: Student Alumni Relations