These Campaign Champions Are Powering Our Future

Since the launch of the $1.3 billion Experience Powered by Northeastern campaign, there has been an outpouring of excitement and support from university faculty and staff. In honor of Northeastern’s 125th anniversary, 125 unique staff and faculty members from across the global university system have volunteered to lead and empower the community as Experience campaign champions.

Three campaign champions who proudly embody the spirit of Northeastern and invest in the future of the university are Ryan Bender, Corliss Thompson, and Daniel Medwed.

For Ryan Bender, director of digital university solutions and experience, Northeastern has played a critical role in his life. “I have a lot to give back to Northeastern,” he remarks. “It’s given me my career, lifelong friends, and I love it here.”

Bender’s journey began in 2014, when he was an undergraduate student at Northeastern. He landed a night-shift job answering phones at the IT help desk, which became a turning point in his university experience. “I fell in love with IT, and the job had fantastic tuition benefits, which allowed me to finish my degree and work my way up the IT ladder,” he says.

While Bender loved his job, it prevented him from having the time to participate in many aspects of student life. So he took the initiative to philanthropically support Peace Through Play, a student organization that volunteers with children in foster homes. “I’m very passionate about the university,” he says. “Several members of my team also followed a similar path as me, finishing their undergraduate degrees and then working, and choosing to support Northeastern because they’re passionate about seeing it succeed.”

Corliss Thompson serves as the associate dean of the graduate school of education in the College of Professional Studies (CPS). She’s a third-generation college student who has personally experienced the lasting impact of education.

“My grandparents decided they wanted a different life for themselves, so they went to a bachelor’s completion program, similar to the one we have at CPS,” Thompson says. “Then my dad became an engineer and did internships at Georgia Tech, and because of that I was able to be in the position that I’m in now. I’ve lived the impact of the education we provide every day.”

Thompson gives back to the CPS Student Excellence Fund and encourages others to follow her lead. “I see what students can do with the additional support,” she says. “I think we have something really special in our community that people are proud of, and by giving you become a part of that.”

University Distinguished Professor Daniel Medwed has been coming to Northeastern all his life. “I love Northeastern. I’m from Boston, and I used to break into Cabot Center to play basketball,” he recalls. “I love the school, and I’m really proud to be part of it.”

As a professor of law and criminal justice, Medwed is passionate about increasing equity and providing his students with greater access to education and discovery. “At Northeastern’s core is access to opportunities, access to knowledge, and new frontiers. We’re always pushing the envelope,” he says.

And while Medwed has taught at other universities, he supports Northeastern because it’s always looking ahead. “I give to funds that will support access, scholarships for students from marginalized or vulnerable populations, and public interest scholarships at the School of Law. That’s what this institution is about.”

Throughout the rest of the academic year, our campaign champions will continue to lead Northeastern toward a brighter and bolder future. Their actions are showing the university community, and the world, what it means to be a Husky.