Alumna says UA plays 'vital role' in shaping local economy
While many UA graduates choose to leave Arizona after they graduate, Zoee Tsighis didn't even wander from campus.
Tsighis, a recent communication graduate, was recently hired as the assistant director of development for Campaign Arizona, the University of Arizona's billion-dollar fund-raising effort.
Tsighis will serve as both an assistant to the campaign's Executive Director Tom Sanders and as a liaison to donors and alumni.
"I will be assisting with campaign development matters, working with the presidential leadership team, but most importantly, I will be developing relationships with alumni," she said.
Tsighis graduated in 1999 and said she had no idea what she wanted to do. Unlike many UA graduates, she opted not to leave town and took a job with the UA Foundation.
"Zoee not only is familiar with the UA Foundation's staff and operations, she brings to Campaign Arizona a track record of proven creativity and accomplishment," Sanders said. "We're extremely pleased to have her on board."
Tsighis said she realized the value of higher education and the importance of the university's research programs while working for the foundation. She said the university plays a vital role in shaping the economy of the state and of Tucson.
In the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks and the drop in the stability of Arizona's economy, Tsighis said she sees Campaign Arizona's mission as more important than ever.
"People understand the value of giving and what it takes to keep things going in the university system, especially with what has happened in the state and in the nation," she said. "In order to help the state survive, we need to keep all the gears of the UA moving."
Tsighis said Tucson's goal of becoming Optics Valley, a haven for high-tech optics companies, is contingent on UA and its optical sciences program. She said donations are key in keeping programs like those competitive.
"Students at the U of A are so lucky to have affordable tuition," she said. "Students would not be able to have that privilege if it were not for alumni and donors."
Tsighis said she plans on entering graduate school at the UA but, in the mean time, will devote her time to her new position.