The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Alumni Impact


Melissa James ’10 Wins UMass Amherst Distinguished Alumni Award

Melissa James ’10 is president and CEO of The Tech Connection, a Boston-based recruitment firm that supports the professional development of diverse, underrepresented technical talent through individualized career planning and job placement. James strives to help people reach their highest potential by accelerating their individual pathway to success.

This year, James was given the Distinguished Young Alumni Award. This award honors alumni who have graduated within the last ten years demonstrating accelerated career progression in public, business or professional realms and who have used their UMass Amherst education in a quest for excellence.



Kyung-Wha Kang (M.A., PhD, Communication) Named UN Special AdvisorKyung-Wha Kang

Alumna Kyung-Wha Kang is serving as special advisor on policy to United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who took office Jan. 1.

Kang, who earned her Ph.D. and M.A. through the communication department in the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, headed Guterres’ transition team since his election in October. She previously served as assistant secretary-general for humanitarian affairs since April 2013, and was deputy high commissioner for human rights from 2007 to 2013.