Small Island,
Big Impact

Glori Alvarez’s ’88, P’16, passion for BC is matched only by her commitment to helping the Puerto Rican BC community continue to flourish

Glori (right) at Mile 21 with her daughter, Sarah ’16

Glori Alvarez ’88, P’16

Guaynabo, Puerto Rico
Vice President, BCAA Board of Directors
Co-leader, Puerto Rico Alumni Chapter
Council for Women of Boston College

Cresting Heartbreak Hill, Glori Alvarez ’88, P’16, could have been forgiven for flagging a bit. Twenty miles into the 2016 Boston Marathon, her legs felt sluggish and stiff. But up ahead at Mile 21, her daughter Sarah ’16—a month from graduating, wearing a “We Run with Glori” shirt—led a group of donors and supporters in full-throated cheers. With Gasson Hall at her side and her daughter ahead, Glori pressed on, heartened.

Glori during her 1st day as a freshman in1984.

A dedicated Eagle and board member of the Boston College Alumni Association (BCAA), Glori has enjoyed many special moments since she began her time at the Heights, where she lived in the now-demolished Mod 21A. This one stands out above the rest, a picture-perfect encapsulation of her decades-long BC journey. “It was such a cool moment,” she says, “[Sarah] somehow jumped the fence, and then she stood with the Puerto Rican flag, cheering right in the middle of Comm. Ave.” 

When it comes to fostering community and supporting current and future Eagles, Glori brings her trademark commitment and passion to the Puerto Rican chapter of the BCAA. Asked to take on a leadership role as the chapter reorganized, she didn’t hesitate: “Anything for BC,” she says, adding, “This is a very small island; everybody knows everybody. We’re a very tight-knit group.”

Under her leadership, the chapter has grown remarkably. “In the early 2000s, we’d have maybe eight or nine current students at a time,” she says. “This fall, there are 71 Puerto Rican students on campus; we’re up to 20-something per year. And that’s what we try to nourish.” 

“We like to be together,” says Glori. “Whether it’s Global Days of Service, a game watch, a family event, if you say ‘social,’ attendance is through the roof.” The chapter’s hallmark event, however, is the send-off social each summer for the incoming and returning BC students. “We’ll have alumni from all manner of professions and backgrounds chatting with current Eagles, exchanging cards with recent graduates. We’re all Eagles,” she says. “We look out for each other.” 

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