TD Banknorth employees discovered recently they have more in common than just their jobs.
They also are University of Maine alumni.
Early in April, the Portland-based bank held a reception so staff members who graduated from the flagship University could connect with one another and hear from President Robert Kennedy about the exciting new academic programs, research and development initiatives and construction projects happening on campus.
“The purpose was to explore ways that the bank and the University could come closer together,” said Ted Scontras ‘71, TD Banknorth executive vice president for higher education. “Every single person there left so impressed with what Dr. Kennedy outlined – not only the accomplishments but his vision. It was quite exciting to hear about where the University is going.”
UMaine alumni from the last five decades attended the afternoon gathering at the Cumberland Club in Portland.
“It was fun to see the bank employees, from a number of locations in Maine, meet each other as colleagues and alums,” said Karen Boucias, director of international programs at UMaine. She graduated from the University with Ted and was instrumental in getting the reception off the ground.
While some of the alumni who attended the event regularly return to UMaine, others hadn’t seen the campus in 15 years, she pointed out. But the recent get-together may have turned that around.
“We think they’ll come back.”
University officials and representatives from the Development Office, the Alumni Association and the Foundation also attended the event and were pleased to see graduates who care about supporting the University so it can continue to thrive.
“We all get involved in our business world and it’s often hard to take time to talk about and think about what helped you get there,” said Ted. “But, clearly, UMaine helped us get where we are.”
With offices throughout the state, TD Banknorth has nearly 9,000 employees, many of whom are UMaine graduates, he said. Because organizers aimed to keep the recent gathering small, they primarily invited staff only from the southern part of the state.
But since the event was so successful, the bank likely will hold more UMaine alumni get-togethers down the road. In fact, President Kennedy suggested the company hold a reception right here on campus.
“We’d love to do that,” Ted said.