Little did Laura Glazier-Smith know as a student at Kingsborough Community College that she would return to her alma mater someday as director of the alumni department.
After graduating high school at age 16, she enrolled at Brooklyn College before deciding at the last minute to attend Kingsborough.
“I’m so glad I did because Kingsborough helped build the confidence I needed to pursue a four-year degree,” says Glazier-Smith.
After graduating with an associate’s degree, she pursued her bachelor’s degree at Baruch in mathematics, and later her master of business administration in organizational effectiveness and human resources management. After working as an actuary and pension consultant in Manhattan for 20 years, the Woman of Distinction came home to her Brooklyn roots — and to Kingsborough, the place she first began her post-secondary education.
Fellow alum Ellen Zucker says she met Glazier-Smith while trying to obtain a beach pass. Zucker had come back to Brooklyn to care for her aging mother and says that Glazier-Smith’s kindness and help during that time was immediately striking.
“Laura’s an incredible person,” says Zucker. “She’s just such a happy, genuine person, amazingly organized, caring, devoted and passionate.”
Glazier-Smith says she was more than happy to help a Kingsborough sister.
“Ellen was very thankful that we had open arms in welcoming her back,” she says. “She had very fond memories of Kingsborough, and strong connections to classmates, so she was very happy to reconnect.”
Not surprisingly, this is what Glazier-Smith enjoys most about her new job.
“I love meeting people, both alumni and students,” she says. “I hadn’t anticipated this when I took the job, that I would be meeting so many wonderful alums and hearing their success stories — like me, they have a deep appreciation of Kingsborough.”
The majority of Kingsborough students are driven and they love school, and she is lucky to have the opportunity to give back to the community that helped form her career, says the honoree.
In addition to providing help to alumni, Glazier-Smith helps raise money for student scholarships, including smaller-scale needs, such as books and transportation.
“You may think these costs may be minimal, but they matter greatly and can make a difference whether a student can get to school and pass the class,” she states.
Another aspect of her job that Glazier-Smith thoroughly enjoys is arranging speaking engagements for alumni to come back and share their success stories. Several Kingsborough graduates hold master’s degrees and doctorates, and they encourage the current students to strive for the very best after graduation. “The speeches from the alumni inspire each current student to be the very best he or she can be,” she notes.
Glazier-Smith inspires all the people she meets at Kingsborough Community College, whether they’re past or present students, claims Zucker.
“Laura is like an angel because she is a true people person, and a role model for me to be a better person myself,” she says.
Neighborhood: Sheepshead Bay.
Occupation: Director of Alumni Relations.
Company: Kingsborough Community College.
Claim To Fame: “Helping the Kingsborough community thrive.”
Favorite place: “On my boat, in the ocean, in Jamaica Bay, which overlooks Kingsborough.”
Woman I Admire: “My sister because she has raised five children, and they are all phenomenal, fabulous people.”
Motto: “Love what you do.”