blog postsQ&A with DJ's Lucas O'BryanQ&A with DJ's Lucas O'Bryan Why did you join the DJ team?Being a student and part of SAA, I had a peek into engagement and was curious to learn more about how that works—how the alumni are identified and engaged and the logistics. I love Illinois so much that I wanted to be able to connect with some of those more disengaged alumni and share that enthusiasm and remind people what’s great about the University. What was the best part of...UIDEA?How organized [Katie Blum] was in managing the execution of the entire program and keeping us on track. UIF is not just talking the talk but has dedicated actual resources to managing a program for innovation. …your project? Getting to talk to alumni who are disengaged and to define the potential routes in for them. What did you learn about…alumni and donors?I learned too many things to pick just one. Our document outlines those items. I’d encourage everyone to read the manifesto document. …advancement? How much of a people industry it is. Managing personal relationships is a lot of work and everyone from researchers to gift officers get really invested in that relationship. …yourself? I do pretty well being put on the spot. With all of the processes and acronyms we had to learn quickly and then getting asked tough questions, I had to be able to think quickly on my feet to answer and to back up our research and recommendations. Five years from now, what does advancement look like at Illinois?Alumni are more engaged with the University as a whole, not just advancement. That includes students in a more symbiotic way than before. There are strong pillars already. The tendrils will just continue to grow. What has changed in the world that advancement will need to tackle?Social media. I don’t even know that the world knows the full potential yet, like how we are engaging communities in virtual spaces or what the impact on the act of giving might be.