Spartans of UD - Keith ParrisBy University Relations Staff
Spartans of UD highlights what makes the University of Dubuque special - the people.
Keith Parris (C'00), vice president of contact center operations and technology at BCU Financial Services, shares his Spartan pride as an active alumnus. He advocates for young adults pursuing their dreams at UD by remaining active with the men's basketball team, participating in panel discussions and mock interviews with students, supporting the Annual Student Scholarship Fund, and more. Parris is also one of the newest members of UD's Board of Trustees. Additionally, he is the main point person for the Black Alumni tailgate tent - one of the largest at Homecoming. This year, Parris is partnering with the Office of Advancement and Alumni Engagement to give any donations he receives at the tailgate to the Annual Student Scholarship Fund.
What does Homecoming mean to you?
"Homecoming means a lot to me, as it's a return home during a special time. The chance to see familiar faces, see the growth on campus, watch the UD Spartan football team compete at a high level, and attend the tailgate of course are a highlight for me, and I'm excited for 2023 UD Homecoming!"
How would you describe the energy as Spartans come together during the tailgate before the football game?
"The energy is crazy during the tailgate! The reunions, old classmates catching up, the overall atmosphere, and not to mention the food is amazing! I love seeing the generations of students and their families interacting with each other."
Why was it important to you to partner with the Office of Advancement and Alumni Engagement to give back any donations received at the Black Alumni tailgate tent during Homecoming to the Annual Student Scholarship Fund?
"The past few years I was consistently asked to accept donations - some people even thought I was an official food truck and offered to pay - and I decided this could be a great way to bring awareness to the Annual Student Scholarship Fund. The Office of Advancement and Alumni Engagement does an amazing job, and I realize every little bit helps."
In 2021, you received the University of Dubuque's Volunteer Recognition Award. Can you describe your life motto and share your advice for current students?
"Receiving the 2021 University of Dubuque's Volunteer Recognition Award was one of my proudest achievements and something that I'll cherish forever. My life motto is pretty simple ... start early! Don't take time for granted and continue to experience the experiences! My advice to current students is never think you are on your journey alone, take advantage of the wealth of resources that UD offers, and, when you are able, give back in any way you are able."
In your opinion, what makes the University of Dubuque unique?
"The culture, the holistic focus on the student experience, and the ability to prepare students for the next stage in their life all contribute to the uniqueness of the University of Dubuque."