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Sacchi Patel ’09, G’11

Saachi PatelSacchi Patel’s favorite Syracuse University memories are atmospheric and athletic—the first time he saw lightning during a snowstorm, and watching SU basketball with his close friends. “Syracuse University means everything to me,” says Patel, vice president of the NorCalOrange Alumni Club. “SU is where I had such profound experiences that I changed my major, went back for graduate school, and altered my career path to dedicate my efforts to changing our society.”

Patel earned a bachelor’s degree in pre-med psychology from Syracuse University’s College of Arts and Sciences and a master’s degree in cultural foundations of education and a certificate of advanced study in women and gender studies from SU’s School of Education. He is the manager of education and emergency response at Stanford University’s Office of Sexual Assault and Relationship Abuse Education and Response.

He is also co-founder of MasculinityU.com, a coalition of individuals working to challenge and change commonly held perceptions of what it means to be male. The organization offers a national speakers bureau, curriculum development, advocacy and programmatic consulting, and guided facilitation. “My occupation is being a social justice activist and educator with the ultimate goal of making positive social change, starting with ending the violence against women,” he says.

Being able to take what he learned in the classroom and translating it into real-world experiences was a hallmark of his SU education, according to Patel. “SU allowed me to gain confidence and increased my comfort in asking questions, helping me to truly learn,” he says. “It gave me the freedom to explore my academic and personal passions. SU is where I shared some of my most meaningful experiences with people who matter the most to me, and it’s where I grew intellectually.”

Patel’s devotion to SU basketball was his original reason for getting in contact with the SU alumni club in San Francisco. “I first joined NorCalOrange when I moved out here from the East Coast and wanted to meet fellow alumni to watch SU basketball games,” he says. “Then I wanted to become more involved with the club, and now serve as vice president.”

Patel encourages other Bay Area alumni to maintain their SU connection. “Syracuse isn’t just another few years in school—it’s part of us, and shaped us in some way,” he says. “I think it’s critical for alumni to stay connected and continue to support SU. Because then we can praise what we loved best and help improve areas where we saw the need for change.”