Imagine. It’s graduation and the graduates from your university are preparing to walk across the stage. Once they walk across the stage, they are gone from any involvement in the university. EVER. AGAIN.
Just kidding. Of course, there’s still opportunities for alumni to remain involved and give back to their alma mater. Some just may not be prepared to do so right away and others who are able may not be able to make as big of an impact as more established alums. This won’t always be the case though. If a relationship is developed and a smaller giving pattern is developed, this can grow exponentially throughout the years.
The key to fostering a relationship and establishing a giving pattern is by connecting with recent alumni (bet you saw that one coming from the title, huh?). Here are some of the best ways to connect with recent alumni and keep alumni involved and excited about their alma mater.
A great way to remain connected to recent alumni is by having events specifically geared towards them. It gives them a chance to network with fellow alumni and also gives them a chance to have a good time celebrating their alma mater. These events can be activities such as tailgating at home football games, dinner party events in big cities, and casual meet ups. Rutgers University even had a beach party! Having occasional events creates a community around recent alumni and creates a feeling of being truly involved and truly still a part of their university.
HELP WITH NETWORKING
As recent alumni try to get on their feet in the post-grad world, many are seeking network opportunities. Whether this is to help them get a position or to establish connections with others in their respective fields, these network opportunities are invaluable. As a university or an alumni association, facilitating these connections will be an invaluable gift to recent alumni. Knowing that the university they graduated from is still interested in their careers can mean that the alumni will be more willing to continue the relationship with the university on their side as well.
I’m a part of a group on Facebook that is made up of alumni from the degree program I graduated from. It’s not a university created group; it’s completely run by former students. The student in charge of the group will often use the group as a way to shout out the accomplishments of alumni. This is a great way to keep everyone in the loop of what fellow alumni are doing and also a great way to encourage and support alumni. This is definitely something that you can incorporate into your plan for staying connected with alumni. Highlighting the achievement of alumni is a good way to show alumni that you are still keeping up with what they are doing and are invested in their accomplishments.
Staying connected with recent alumni is incredibly important. If you make that connection right away, there is a higher chance of fostering loyalty to the university. If you show value that the university can provide for recent alumni, the higher chance they will be more inclined to stay connected and be financially involved. Using these three examples are a good starting point to foster these connections and create a loyal recent alumni connection.
Need help on figuring out how to get attendees to come to your recent alumni event? Check out our free case study on using inbound marketing for a local event.