Mission Maker: Sam Allen

January 20, 2021
By: Father Benet Phillips, O.S.B.

It’s hard to imagine the Career Development Center, as it is currently known, without Sam Allen. How many of us remember it as the Office of Career Services or Career Employment Services? No matter its name, location or reporting structure, one thing remained constant -- at least until very recently. The one constant was Sam Allen. Sam announced that at the end of the Fall 2020 semester, after 38 years of dedicated service to the Saint Anselm College community, he would be retiring. Imagine the number of cover letters and resumes read and critiqued, the mock interviews conducted, the networking advice given, the introductions facilitated and the fashion tips given, “wear socks to your interview.” Not to mention the career fairs, dining for success and etiquette seminars (happily they included dinner-- I still remember that salt and pepper always travel together and when seated the napkin is on your lap!). The open houses, admitted student days, committee meetings, new student orientations, family weekends, and commencements? No matter what hat Sam was wearing at any given moment, he was an ardent supporter of Saint Anselm College and one of its greatest ambassadors. Known for his graciousness, professionalism and affability, Sam certainly advanced the mission of college one job offer at a time.

Executive Director of the Career Development Center, Kimberly DelGizzo wrote, “I believe Sam would tell you that the true highlight of his career has been the development of relationships with the thousands of students he’s advised as they’ve launched their careers. He’s enjoyed seeing many of them rise through the ranks to senior leadership positions within their industries while continuing to contribute resources and service to Saint Anselm. It’s not uncommon for our CDC team to witness the heart-warming visits of former students, many of whom bring their children in as their sons or daughters enroll in the College.”
Mark Cronin, Dean of the College, adds this: “Sam Allen was one of the first people I met when I started working at the college, because his office was across the hall from mine. It was immediately easy to see why students liked him: he was smart, generous with his time, funny, and easy to work with. It was also easy to see why his staff enjoyed working with him: he was knowledgeable, professional, and managed with a light touch. More than both of these things, though, Sam believed that Saint Anselm College transformed students’ lives for the better, and he personally contributed to that transformation more than we can measure. I will miss him as a colleague and a friend.”

Along with his dedication to Saint Anselm College, Sam is very involved in local history and civic engagement. He has been a successful community leader, organizer, fundraiser and sports coach. Sam is also a New Hampshire historian, and in 2019 he received the Historic New England Prize for Collecting Works on Paper. In fact, he’s currently involved in planning for the 400th anniversary of his city.

While we will miss Sam on the hilltop, we wish him great happiness and good health in his retirement.
Thanks to Sam Allen, the mission of Saint Anselm College lives on.