Alumni Engagement – The Paradigm Shift!

Posted on Tuesday, March 18th, 2014 by Sahil Dewan Tags: , , ,

How often do we sight examples of a Harvard or a Stanford to epitomize the Education experience for someone. Not only do we appreciate the level of education but we also appreciate how it’s done there, the environment for a student, the professors, the engagement and involvement of some of the top world leaders (most of who would be alumni of these institutions), let’s say it’s all a very lucrative package which lands you with the best perspectives and skills to start off jobs or your own companies.

alumni engagement

Just to endorse the outcome of the educational experiences at these institutions, look at some of the top companies of the last 2 decades, they’ve been nourished by geniuses while they were at these campuses. From Facebook, to Sun Microsystems, to Yahoo, all of them have risen as a result of the combined geniuses of the people who started them and the institution’s (and their alumni’s) unconditional support. Not only entrepreneurs coming out of these institutions are great examples of the value created by these institutions but also if you look at their alumni, the picture becomes clearer.

So, if we ask a young person today about their reasons for applying to some of these top institutions for their career advancement, a core aspect of their answer would be that they see the value these institutions add to their students, visible by virtue of what their alumni are doing today! Joining a school is no longer about getting a degree followed by a job, it’s about the experience and exposure you get while you’re there. Some of the leading schools are focusing on enhancing this experience through engagement of industry and alumni with their institutions which brings in a whole lot of perspective, projects, internships, jobs, and a platform for practical learning and guidance which in turn decreases the pressure off books to serve as a one stop shop for an education experience.

Alumni Engagement is causing a paradigm shift across some of the top institutions of the world, where one can see alumni not just volunteering for making donations to give back to their alma mater but are being engaged across a variety of programs, which are fuelling the progress and development of students along with the institution. Schools and Universities across the US and UK are budgeting millions of dollars an year for running their Advancement, Development and Alumni Relations Offices. Another focus is the manpower they deploy to manage their Alumni offices/associations and bring across a strong relationship building culture with their alumni.

Some of the top universities in US employ lose to 200 staffers for managing their alumni, development & advancement offices. These staffers look after a wide variety of programs which offer career advancement for students & alumni, mentorship, consulting projects for students, youth to business connection forums and of course a spectrum of fundraising events and campaigns. A major part of the institution-industry connect happens through alumni which becomes rather more effective and personalized for the school/university.

You can find some of the best Alumni Engagement models across Harvard Business School, University of Pennsylvania, University of Michigan, Oxford University.

Imagine, what if as a student

  • You could have those alumni who’ve been in your situation to guide you and mentor you through all those tough decisions in your college.
  • You could have access to Alumni talks, which would give you perspectives across industries, skills and current market scenarios and help you with more clarity over just textbooks.
  • You had an opportunity to work on projects, internships in companies run by alumni.
  • You had access to alumni who would provide you incubation, acceleration & funding for your business ideas.

Imagine, what if as an alumni

  • You could stay in touch with your batch mates and share your personal and professional development with them
  • You could have information about all alumni and network in order to enhance you career prospects
  • You were honored by your institution and invited to inspire and empower the students of your college/school
  • You can get access to a talented pool of young people for working with/in your organizations

The power of alumni for an institution, it’s students and for the alumni network itself is invaluable, it lies to the extent of efforts put in by institutions to activate their alumni networks.

And this is exactly what we’re here to do for you!

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