Reify Solutions co-founder Shane Nelson may have graduated from Drexel University more than five years ago, but a strong working relationship with his alma mater has since developed through Nelson’s professional career. Currently serving on the Alumni Academia Steering Committee through Drexel’s Alumni Association, Nelson has been responsible for planning and holding a series of diversity-related events at the university. The first of these events was “DE&I Basics”, a virtual workshop session headed by Nelson that provided attendees with practical knowledge pertaining to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Speaking to the importance of the November 2020 event, Nelson said, “it brought people together to start a necessary conversation and allowed for approachable conversations to continue taking place the moment the session ended”.
Nelson was also invited to speak at Drexel’s virtual panel “Black Entrepreneurs in Action” in October 2020, where he shared his experience in navigating the world as a Black and Indian entrepreneur. Answering questions from students, Nelson additionally offered professional insight as to how he continues to operate Reify Solutions during the current COVID-19 pandemic. The discussion was moderated by Nelson’s longtime mentor Roger Lee, an entrepreneur and faculty member at Drexel’s Close School of Entrepreneurship. Nelson has viewed Lee as a “guiding light” in the formation of Reify Solutions - someone who has helped instill a strong mentality of confidence in the business’s operations and ability to provide for its clients.
In August 2020, Nelson was appointed to the Advisory Board of Drexel’s Center for Black Culture (CBC). The CBC serves as a hub of information, activity, and community for Black students, faculty, staff, and alumni. Additionally, Nelson is a member of Drexel’s Black Alumni Council (DUBOC), serving on its Young Alumni Committee. The group’s mission is to embrace Drexel’s people of color community, connect current students and alumni through communication, programs and events, and to develop the next generation of black alumni. In these roles, along with his other positions, Nelson aims to help create a more welcome and inclusive campus environment for everyone at Drexel.
Nelson is grateful to Drexel for providing him with a highly fruitful undergraduate experience, viewing the university as the place that set his foundation for future successes. Through his coursework and student leadership appointments, Drexel showed Nelson that he had the ability to be an entrepreneur once he began his post-graduate professional endeavors. “If it wasn’t for my experience at Drexel balancing classes, student organizations, family, and personal relationships, I would not have my most important skill sets today,” Nelson said, reflecting on his collegiate experience. Looking towards the future, Nelson expects to be a part of Drexel University’s diversity initiatives for years to come.