Welcome, Memphis 'Dores
Welcome to the Memphis Chapter of the Vanderbilt Alumni Association!
With over 2,400 alums in the greater Memphis area, the chapter is committed to fostering an environment where Vanderbilt graduates can come together to strengthen our connections to each other and the university. Over the course of the year, we will put on a diverse set of events. Whether you are interested in athletic watch parties, community service outings, networking nights, continuing educational opportunities, or cultural experiences, there will be something for all ages and interests, including families.
If you would like to stay up to date on upcoming events, please update your mailing address and email address on your VUconnect profile. You can also follow us on Facebook for real-time updates. Feel free to reach out to one of us if you have any questions, comments, or suggestions. We can't wait to see you soon!
- Gavin Driskill, BA’08, Co-President
- Keith Madden, BE’07, Co-President
- Michael King Carrier, BS'88, Athletics Chair
- Laura Meanwell, BE'89, Community Service Chair
- Julia McFall Maroda, BE'82, MEd'84, Member at Large
- Scott Morrell, BA'73, Alumni Association Board Member
Memphis is known for its vibrant music, unique food, captivating arts, and philanthropic nature. You will be blown away by the Southern hospitality, incredible cuisine and musical history.
Furthermore, this city provides a plethora of opportunities to get involved, network, build lasting relationships, and make a legitimate impact throughout the city. If you have the smarts and ambition, you can be a big fish in this pond.
Where to Live
The cost of living in Memphis is very reasonable. Great apartments, condos and houses may be found in nearly every part of Memphis and Shelby County. The true heart and vigor of Memphis can be found in the Midtown and Downtown areas.
Cooper Young and Overton Square – These Midtown neighborhoods arguably host the most diverse selection of young professionals in the city with an incredible selection of attractions, restaurants, lounges, and bars.
Downtown – Memphis boasts a modern new-age setting with affordable luxury condos and lofts throughout the Mud Island, South Bluffs, and Main St. communities. Nearby, you will find the iconic Beale St, National Civil Rights Museum, the Gibson guitar factory, the FedEx Forum, and much more! And if you enjoy living along water, living Downtown conveniently affords you the opportunity to run or walk along the Mississippi River.
Memphis gets a bad rap as a city, but the most important thing is to stay vigilant. Every city has its good parts and its rough patches. Most importantly, do not walk alone at night (or if at all). ’21
Young professional groups
Depending on your interests, New Memphis Institute, Memphis Fast Forward, NEXUS, and The Leadership Academy provide excellent opportunities designed to assimilate young professionals into the community while placing them in positions to succeed. If you are a socialite, or simply enjoy meeting new people, and also enjoy wielding your influence to benefit others, these groups would certainly appeal to you.
Things to do
The Memphis Flyer is the free local weekly newspaper (found at all grocery stores, movie theatres, etc.) that lists everything from book signings to concerts.
Midtown (near Cooper St. and Young St.) is a great hangout for young adults and young professionals. Germantown, and especially Wolfchase Galleria, is great for shopping, but it can get very crowded on weekends. If you are looking for music and nightlife, Beale Street offers wonderful live music at night. Finally, if you are in Memphis, you MUST try the barbecue. ’12
There is a lot to do in Memphis if you know what to look for! Nightlife is definitely manageable with all of the different bars available. There are also historic and cultural places to visit that are still beautiful and interesting, even for millennials. ’14
I just started working downtown. As a native Memphian this may seem kind of sad, but I just never really did downtown. Now that I work here and see it every day, I realize it’s like a whole different part of Memphis. They have really built it up and there are all these really eclectic restaurants that are hole in the walls that you wouldn’t think to find unless you explored. I love it! ’13
- Graceland – Take a time machine into the era of Elvis’ dominance.
- Stax Museum – Groove with the likes of Al Green, Isaac Hayes, and James Brown.
- Live music – No matter your taste—blues, bluegrass, indie, punk, salsa, neo-soul, or jazz—there is a place for you to enjoy your favorite tunes. Good midtown music dives include: Young Avenue Deli | Minglewood Hall | Lafayette’s Music Room | The Zebra Lounge | The Blue Monkey.
- Raiford’s Hollywood – Put your late-night energy to work and dance like it’s the ’80s on the beautifully lit dance floor.
- Dixon Gallery and Gardens – Stroll through 17 acres of woodland tracts, formal spaces, and cutting gardens.
- Memphis Botanic Gardens – Expect to fall in love with any one of the 23 specialty gardens that provide an intimate experience and look into various families of plants, flowers, and trees.
- Orpheum Theatre / Playhouse on the Square – Experience quality entertainment delivered by the finest stage acts we have to offer.
- Memphis Zoo – This nationally renowned zoo offers visitors the opportunity to see the rare panda bear.
- Memphis in May International Festival – This festival lasts throughout the entire month of May and is arguably the most fun, interactive, and popular festival of the year! Highlights include the Beale Street Music Festival and the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest.
- Free concerts – Levitt Shell in Overton Park offers free concerts.
- Live at the Garden – A highly acclaimed outdoor concert series provides the opportunity to hear great music with reserved table tickets or lawn tickets where you can bring in whatever you want to eat and drink.
- Professional and College Sports – FedEx St. Jude Golf Tournament | Memphis Redbirds | Memphis Tigers | Memphis Grizzlies
Memphis - By the Numbers
- Alumni: 2,343
- Students: 79