Q&A with the Alumni Office: Aly Mason ’07 & Ali Schwartz ’10

Shipley is lucky to have two of its own at the helm of a re-energized Alumni Engagement Office after a two-year hiatus from hosting regional and major events. Aly Mason ’07 took over the role of Director in September 2022, joining Assistant Director Ali Schwartz ’10 in the shared endeavor of connecting with alumni of all ages through robust alumni programming.

Q: Why did you come back to work at Shipley?

Aly ’07: I came back to Shipley not only because I hold my education and friendships from here closely, but also because of the growth and progress Shipley has committed to. I am excited that we have the honor and responsibility to serve the alumni community as Shipley continues to be a major leader in independent schools.

Ali ’10: In 2019 I was looking to get into the development field and happened to be at a Shipley alumni reception in Philadelphia when I learned that they had an opening in the Alumni Office. I was so excited for the opportunity to come back to Shipley in a new role (after having served as the Middle School Counselor) and get a front row seat to the many ways that Shipley prepares students for success in life.

Q: What is alumni engagement?

Aly ’07: Alumni engagement is fostering, growing, and maintaining relationships with the broad alumni community. Engagement can be in all different forms, which is what makes it inspiring work and such a fun office to be a part of. Alumni engagement is whatever alumni want it to be and whatever feels organic to them. It can take shape through attending an alumni event, serving as an affinity group leader or member, presenting to a class as a featured speaker, or scrolling through the School’s social media to see what’s currently happening at Shipley. The common ground in all of these actions is that alumni are engaging with the school and that’s what we continue to strive for.

Ali ’10: I think Aly said it well! We are here to serve the alumni community and create ways for alumni, honorary alumni, and even parents of alumni to stay connected to each other and the School.

Q: What excites you about the future of alumni engagement at Shipley?

Aly ’07: It is so exciting to see new alumni join the Shipley “alumni network” each year. New alumni mean new perspectives, new ideas, and new camaraderie. This annual growth and change provides us with the challenge, as well as the opportunity, to constantly innovate as it pertains to programming, networking, and overall strategy to keep alumni connected and thinking about Shipley.

Ali ’10: I’m excited to work with Aly and have another Shipley alumna in the office! I’ve been really inspired by meeting and reconnecting with alumni at our regional events and learning about the types of programs and volunteer opportunities that interest them most.

Q: How will you continue to honor Shipley’s past while helping the School move into the future?

Aly ’07: Shipley’s history is fascinating. I learn something new about the School almost every day. I continue to be impressed and in awe of the School’s growth while remaining true to pieces of its history. The best way to uphold and honor Shipley’s past as we go into the future is through storytelling. It’s conversing with alumni in all capacities and from all years to better understand their Shipley experience and how we can translate that experience to shape Shipley into its best possible self as a school and as a community.

Ali ’10: Like Aly said, there is so much history at Shipley and I am always learning something new. I love pulling out issues of the Bulletin or copies of the yearbook from decades ago and seeing so many similarities with the priorities of the School today.

Aly Mason ’07

Syracuse University, BS

Senior Superlative
Done the Most for Shipley

Activities While a Shipley Student
Student Government (Junior & Senior Class President), Soccer, Swim Team, Softball 

Favorite Shipley Memory
Woodlands is a stand out memory and continues as a topic of conversation among our classmates 20+ years later. Additionally, I continue to appreciate all of the friendships and relationships I built within Shipley classrooms and playing fields as a favorite and most appreciated memory. 

Something that Hasn’t Changed at Shipley
The focus on the individual and that there is not a “box” that Shipley students feel they must fit in.

Ali Schwartz ’10

University of Pennsylvania, BA;
University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, MSEd and MPhilEd

Senior Superlative
Most Spirited

Activities While a Shipley Student
Crew, Sprouts, Bryn Mawr Tutoring, Social Committee, “Green Team Captain”

Favorite Shipley Memory
I could probably share a favorite memory for each of my 14 years, but I think the most memorable is Woodlands. Lower School probably holds the most sentimental value, like getting “real homework” in first grade and feeling so mature; graduating to the cafeteria in second grade and feeling even older and wiser.

Something that Hasn’t Changed at Shipley
The support and encouragement students get from their teachers… and feeling intimidated walking into the Senior Lounge if you’re not a senior!
The Shipley School is a private, coeducational day school for pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students, located in Bryn Mawr, PA. Through our commitment to educational excellence, we develop within each student a love of learning and a desire for compassionate participation in the world.