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Engaging Young Alumni: 25 Methods in 20 Minutes Kourtney Kleine Temple Assistant Director of Student and Young Alumni Programs Nicole Kusiolek ‘06 Young Alumni Committee Member. 25 Methods in 20 Minutes. Define who your club considers “young alumni”

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Engaging Young Alumni:

25 Methods in 20 Minutes

Kourtney Kleine Temple

Assistant Director of Student and Young Alumni Programs

Nicole Kusiolek ‘06

Young Alumni Committee Member


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

  • Define who your club considers “young alumni”

  • Alumni Association defines it as 0-10 years out of school

  • Recent alumni is defined as 0-3 years out of school

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

  • 2. Highlight the young alumni membership rates in your materials.

    • Alumni Association membership is complimentary for the first year after graduation.

    • 2nd and 3rd years out are eligible for reduced dues of $25.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

3. Consider implementing a young alumni discount if there is a fee to attend an event. Even $5 or $10 off the registration fee could be an incentive for a young alum to attend.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

4. If you are asking for gifts, make the giving levels attainable for young alumni. Focus on participation and the impact of every gift, no matter how big or small.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

5. Make sure your online presence is dynamic and up-to-date, including updated contact information for your club or chapter and an updated calendar of upcoming events.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

6. Provide prominent links to any of your social media pages. Social media is one of the top ways young alumni will connect with your group.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

7. If your club or chapter does not have an up-to-date and engaging web presence, consider identifying a young alum to take over the maintenance of these pages. Social media is second nature to young alumni and your request will likely elicit an enthusiastic “YES!”

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

8. Keep the lines of communication to your club open. Get back to inquiries about club activities as quickly as possible.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

9. Consider providing incentives to young alumni (or anyone) who updates their contact information with you. This group in particular changes mailing addresses frequently. Many continue to use their parents’ addresses to receive mail for several years after graduation.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

10. Ask young alumni to identify how they would prefer to be contacted. Most will indicate “email” and give you an accurate email address.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

11. Ask for a phone number. Most will give you their cell phone numbers since they don’t have a landline. If they would prefer not to be contacted by phone, they probably won’t even give you a phone number.

11 ½. Don’t forget to share all updated contact information with the Alumni Association!

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

12. Remember that young alumni notoriously wait until the last minute to RSVP. They like to keep their options open until the last possible moment. If you need an accurate headcount, make your RSVP deadlines earlier than you actually need that info.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

  • 13. Learn the young alumni language of Facebook RSVPs. It may not mean what you think it means!

  • A Facebook Yes = Maybe

  • A Facebook Maybe = Probably not, but I’m paying attention.

  • A Facebook No = I can’t this time, but keep inviting me!

  • No response = I’m not interested or I’m not even paying attention.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

14. For a free event, count on 50-60% of those young alumni who said yes actually showing up. That might go as high as 80% if they had to pay for the event. If your attendance rises above 80%, you’re doing something incredible!

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

  • 15. Consider the lifestyles of young alumni and plan accordingly.

  • Do young people in your area tend to rely on public transportation because it’s too expensive to have a car? If so, make sure your event is accessible to public transit.

  • If parking at the event is not free, be sure to mention that in the invitation or reminder emails.

  • If cash would be helpful to have at the event, let young alumni know. Very few regularly carry cash.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

  • 16. The Young Alumni Committee has seen tremendous success with our Young Alumni Career Workshop Series. Even if the topic is not specific to young alumni, programs that “meet them where they are” are successful.

  • Example: Young Alumni Financial Planning Workshop

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

17. Career Networking is huge for young alumni, but they also dread it. Consider hosting a networking event specific to a popular industry in your area. Since most young alumni aren’t “natural” networkers yet, consider adding structure to the event, like speed networking. “Forcing” young alumni to connect with others will ensure they get the most out of the event and are more likely to return for other programs.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

18. Consider reaching out to new graduates or young alumni who have recently relocated to your area with a Terp-themed care package welcoming them to the area. Provide helpful resources for new transplants and invite them to one of your upcoming events to connect with other Terps in the area. Provide contact info for the club if they want to reach out to you.

Bonus: This might be a great way to engage a club member who isn’t interested in event-planning!

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

19. Engage young alumni through local college fairs or admitted student events in your area. Their experiences are more relevant to potential or incoming students and their presence might help potential students feel more comfortable at an event.

More on this in just a moment…

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

  • 20. Create structured volunteer opportunities for young alumni. This group is ready to give back with time and talent (and they have plenty of both) so utilize it!

  • Event set-up or clean-up

  • Work an info booth or registration table

  • Run errands before an event to gather supplies

  • But a word of caution…

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

21. Don’t assign these roles without first getting buy-in from the volunteer. Otherwise they may feel resentful that the “grunt work” was forced on them. Share with them your volunteer needs for each program and let them volunteer for the job that most interests them.

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

  • 22. Inspire young alumni participation with competition. In general, this is a highly competitive group! Consider integrating a challenge component to a program or event.

  • Fundraising challenge

  • Volunteer hours challenge

  • “Bring the most friends” challenge

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

23. Include young alumni in key club decision-making. Club leadership should reflect the diversity of the audiences you’re trying to reach!

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

24. If you have enough young alumni in your club or chapter, consider starting your own Young Alumni Committee, not to marginalize these young people, but to give them the space and resources to implement their own ideas and initiatives. If young alumni don’t feel supported and encouraged, they might want to break off and start a competing group!

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


25 Methods in 20 Minutes

25. Most importantly, be authentic. Don’t try to force it. If it’s painful for you, it will be painful for young alumni as well. This group in particular will see right through a phony attempt to engage them. Young alumni will follow enthusiasm. If your events are fun and you are excited to be there, that Terp spirit will reach young alumni too!

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


Questions?

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]



Admissions Timeline

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


What is Recruit a Terp?

INFO

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


Why is it important?

  • Increasing the Breadth and Depth of the Applicant Pool

  • more students we meet, more to apply, more to choose from (talent, diversity, etc)

  • Year-round campus connection in your community

  • OUA has limited ability to be in an area (ex: Dallas)

  • Increasing Name Recognition

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


Opportunities for Involvement

Alumni are encouraged to attend events year round!. Show your support and share you passion for the University of Maryland!

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


College Fairs

Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


Samuel Riggs IV Alumni Center  College Park, MD 20742-1521

301.405.4678/800.336.8627 alumni.umd.edu[email protected]


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