The strength and sustainability of undergraduate chapters can easily be linked to active alumni/ae and parent relations programs. Below are our Five I’s of an effective program.
Identified – The first step to good alumni/ae and parent relations is knowing about your alumni/ae and parents are, starting with their mailing addresses, emails, phone numbers, and social media. Take it a step further by collecting information about their professional and community leadership. Most chapters have 30-40 percent of their alumni/ae and parent records lost, as well as 75 percent or more of their alumni/ae and parents with limited information.
Informed – Keeping alumni/ae and parents up-to-date on the actions of the chapter and fellow alumni/ae and parents is important. They should help form and maintain your chapter’s vision by continuing to be informed. Since alumni/ae can lose touch with their friends and the chapter quickly and each parent’s connection lasts only for a few years, a regular flow of information is important.
Interested – Offering alumni/ae and parents information about others, and important chapter and campus issues, are productive ways to getting and keeping them interested. For alumni/ae, this depends greatly on the amount of loyalty and dedication that was developed during the undergraduate years, but need not be limited by that. For parents, it depends mostly on their student’s current experience.
Involved – The opportunity to affect the future of the chapter or just the opportunity to share in the present activities, are the keys to alumni/ae and parent involvement. All alumni/ae and parent programming should seek to get them participating in planning, decision making, and activities. Focus should be placed on volunteer involvement, event attendance, providing internships, and supporting leadership programs.
Invested – In terms of involvement, the pinnacle is having alumni/ae and parents invest their money in your programs. This can be as simple as paying for attendance to a function, participating in the annual fund, or donating to the House Corporation and the Educational Foundation for their programs.
To learn more about designing and implementing an effective alumni and parent relations program, contact us today.