Spotlight on Katie Singer
18 February 2015
This week the spotlight is on Katie Singer, Alumni Relations Manager, Development and Alumni Relations Office (DARO).
What is your role and what does it involve?
As Alumni Relations Manager, my role is to build mutually beneficial relationships with our global audience of 200,000 alumni. This means delivering activities that encourage and enable alumni to support UCL, whether that's by giving time, money, advice, or other forms of help.
We're also trying to develop the understanding that alumni have of philanthropy ahead of the public launch of UCL's major fundraising campaign in 2016.
My specific responsibilities include supporting alumni-led reunions, assisting the UK alumni clubs and societies and ensuring that we have a strong benefits and services offer for alumni. There's always a lot to do but with so many different projects, it never gets boring!
How long have you been at UCL and what was your previous role?
I joined UCL in December 2014 which was great timing - not only did I get to attend all the Christmas parties, but I was able to bore friends and family over the holidays by talking about UCL's stellar performance in the REF.
Previously I worked for education charity Teaching Leaders (a sister charity of Teach First) and I also spent four years at The Royal Society.
What working achievement or initiative are you most proud of?
Working with the brilliant Royal Society press team, we secured an eight-page article in the Sunday Times Magazine about some of the UK's best young scientists. We nearly made the front cover but were side-lined at the last minute in favour of Bruce Springsteen.
Tell us about a project you are working on now which is top of your to-do list?
I'm currently working on UCL Philanthropy Month, which DARO is organising in February to celebrate those who support the University, either by giving their time or financial support. As Jeremy Bentham, our philosophical founder, was one of the first investors in UCL, our Philanthropy Month activities will culminate in a record attempt to gather the largest number of people wearing Jeremy Bentham facemasks in one place on campus. The big event will take place at 1.15pm on Tuesday 24 February in the South Cloisters, and we would love it if staff joined us at this very unusual, but unique gathering! Throughout the month we'll also be encouraging students, staff and alumni to pick up or download a Bentham facemask and tweet us their #Benthamselfie - the best-dressed Bentham will get an award! Find out more.
What is your favourite album, film and novel?
Album: Take That's Greatest Hits
Film: Anything with the X-Men in it
Novel: Jane Eyre
What is your favourite joke (pre-watershed)?
Not my favourite joke, but one that I came up with myself. Feedback is encouraged.
What is Schrodinger's cat's favourite sub-atomic particle? A mew-on!
Actually, I think I'll skip the feedback.
Who would be your dream dinner guests?
I would love to have dinner with Jeremy Bentham and find out just what he thinks of our #Benthamselfie campaign!
What advice would you give your younger self?
"Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards." - Søren Kierkegaard.
What would it surprise people to know about you?
I am really very good at catching mice.
What is your favourite place?
My parents' kitchen - there's so much love and food there.