University of Alabama in Huntsville by leader6


									Alumni Strategic Plan                                                              January 2009

                           University of Alabama in Huntsville
                            Alumni Relations Strategic Plan

Mission: The Office of Alumni Relations and the UAH Alumni Association serve as a
link between the university and its graduates by providing communication through media,
activities, and programs. Our goal is to provide alumni with access to the university thus
facilitating a life-long relationship that develops loyalty, attracts resources, and affirms
the value of UAHuntsville in their lives and to our community.

Our vision is that alumni programs will be:

         1. Diverse—We will identify and develop programming that meets the needs of
            the various significant demographic groups within the alumni body. These
            include alumni of each college, various generations, women, minorities,
            retired faculty and staff, and parents of current students. The goal of these
            programs is to increase alumni and community awareness of and pride in the
            university and the role it plays in the economic success of Huntsville and the
         2. Innovative—We will create programs and communications that are
            contemporary, creative, and reflect the high-tech nature of the university and
            the diverse interests of our alumni.
         3. Resourceful—We will initiate partnerships with people, offices, and
            organizations, both on-and off-campus, to strengthen our positions and
            programs and enhance our value to the community by combining resources
            with others to build structures that are stronger than any of us are alone.
         4. Technological—We will use the power of technology to communicate
            effectively and efficiently, to bring a sense of relevance, immediacy, and
            personalization to our messages.

Our Strategic Goals:

1.   Improve communication
2.   Build pride and school spirit
3.   Provide diverse offerings and programs
4.   Grow alumni association funding to better assist the university
5.   Develop alumni loyalty by enhancing student life experiences

Goal 1: Improve Communication

Strong alumni involvement is contingent upon frequent and meaningful communication
between the university and its graduates. Communication is no longer a static set of
publications, rather it is a multiple channel discourse involving various media, activities,
groups, and messages in many forms.

Alumni Strategic Plan                                                              January 2009


Build a multi-pronged alumni communication network that delivers information to a
variety of audiences in various formats. Specifically,
Re-establish the quarterly print tabloid, “UAHuntsville Alumni News”
Redesign alumni web pages
Grow social networking capabilities through Facebook and other platforms
Grow involvement through targeted interest groups
Utilize e-mail blasts
Launch online newsletter
Increase visibility of alumni sponsored programs and activities though signage, posters,
Speak to groups both off- and on-campus about the university, alumni, and how we
contribute to the community.
Be open to new technologies and innovations and ready to adapt and adopt

Goal 2: Build Pride and School Spirit

Building pride in the university and a sense of gratitude toward, and responsibility for, it,
is essential to long-term growth. This is especially important in the Tennessee Valley
where alumni constitute a major presence. It is imperative that graduates take pride in the
university’s long term success and be willing to use their influence and invest their
resources to help UAHuntsville achieve everything from optimal enrollment to private
funding. Building pride must take place with both alumni and students.


We have launched a student alumni organization, “T.R.U.E. Chargers,” to instill a sense
of pride through meaningful service activities, teach students about continuing
involvement after graduation, and train them how to be “good” alumni.

We are establishing corporate alumni chapters to harness the power of clusters of alumni
who work in area businesses for the purpose of building camaraderie and highlighting the
economic impact of UAHuntsville alumni.

We are working with the president, provost, and dean of students to incorporate more
academic tradition on campus and to create UAHuntsville traditions. Examples include
creating an alma mater and establishing new formats for convocations and

We are building camaraderie through social programs such as “Alumni Zone” at hockey
and “Club H” on campus.
Goal 3: Provide diverse offerings and programs

Alumni Strategic Plan                                                            January 2009

Our society is a rich mixture of people from widely varying ethnic backgrounds, social
traditions and generational perspectives. The concept of a “flat world,” the rise of the
Internet and other technologies brings us in closer contact with other cultures than at any
other time in history. The role of women has changed substantially in recent years. More
women now earn bachelor’s degrees than men and represent 53% of graduates since
2000. The longer lifespan of Americans means people remain active both in the
workplace and socially for much longer than previous generations. Contemporary and
effective alumni programming must address these facts, and develop and deliver
messages to people in the formats they find most appealing.


Identify target audiences and plan programs to appeal to them. Focus first on young
alumni (2000-2008) because they have the most recent association with the university,
the most relevant experience with modern UAHuntsville, and the most malleable
attitudes toward involvement.

Establish a women’s program to create a network of women committed to supporting the
university. Identify leadership opportunities to involve women in the life of the
university; build communication between women and the university to develop women’s

Identify and establish appropriate “interest groups” within the alumni body (e.g.—
minorities, specific colleges, organizations) and build programs to meet their needs.
Building affinity and involvement with such groups has significant potential for
enhancing fund-raising.

Partner with the UAH Retired Faculty and Staff to include them in alumni programming.
Many are graduates, have invested much of their careers here, and are powerful
ambassadors for good.

Develop a parent’s association. The objective of this group is to harness the resources of
parents, to increase their knowledge of UAHuntsville, its programs and economic impact,
and to establish parents fund-raising.

Maintain an alumni association board of directors that includes representatives from all
constituent groups.

Partner with community organizations that have a heavy concentration of alumni
members. HuntsvilleYoung Professionals is an example.

Alumni Strategic Plan                                                            January 2009

Goal 4: Grow Alumni Association Funding to better assist the University.

The purpose of the UAH Alumni Association is to support the university in achieving its
mission by engendering support through programs and services. The association strongly
endorses the Power of 10 goals as established by President David Williams and embraces
his vision for the future. The association supports the Office of Advancement strategic
objectives and maintains a cordial working relationship with the staff. The association
desires to increase its financial resources to better assist UAHuntsville.

Founded in 1972 as a separate 501 ( c ) 3 non-profit organization, the UAH Alumni
Association while closely affiliated with the university, is an independent entity
authorized by the Federal government to raise funds, receive, and receipt gifts. The
association is managed by an elected board of 21 alumni. Funds are managed by the
board. The association’s status provides flexibility and enables the group to provide
resources to help defray the costs of projects that are out-of-the-reach of institutional
budgets. Currently, the association provides 10, $3,000 scholarships targeted for juniors
and seniors as a tool to help in student retention. In addition, the association provides
several endowed scholarships. The association pays for the publication of the UAH
Alumni News and provides funding or supplemental resources for a wide variety of
association and university programs.


Build the alumni membership program as a service to alumni and to generate operating
funds. Membership provides alumni access to discounted services both off- and on-
campus, and serves as an effective “opt in” mechanism for identifying alumni who are
donor prospects and have the potential for future volunteer involvement.

Sell advertising sponsorships to help underwrite the cost of programs and activities.

Expand existing revenue-generating affinity partnerships and identify new opportunities.

Invest alumni funds to generate income.

Price all programs and services so that they generate revenue.

Grow fund-raising partnerships such as Combined Federal Campaign.

Identify opportunities to sponsor revenue-generating events.

Open a serious discussion about funding and building an alumni house/conference center
on campus.

Alumni Strategic Plan                                                            January 2009

Recruit outstanding alumni to serve on the alumni board of directors, actively seeking
representatives from all constituent groups.

Goal 5: Develop alumni loyalty by enhancing student life experiences

The life-long bond that is critical to strong alumni support begins when high school
students are being recruited to attend UAHuntsville and is strengthened throughout the
undergraduate years. Alumni relations and alumni association involvement in enhancing
the quality and variety of student life experiences is an investment in our future.


The establishment of T.R.U.E. Chargers student alumni association (See Goal 2).
T.R.U.E. Chargers have elected a board and are planning a general student recruiting
campaign. The president of T.R.U.E. Chargers has been given a seat on the Alumni
Association Board of Directors.

Build a partnership with career services to help students and alumni prepare for, find, and
change jobs throughout their working lives.

Build a partnership with the dean of students and office of enrollment services to create
programs and activities to accomplish mutual goals

Provide resources for academic ceremonies such as convocations and commencements to
help students develop a sense of tradition and pride

Continue to provide and increase the number of Alumni Association Annual


Work Plan and Measures of Success

January 1-2009-December 31, 2009
    Complete structure and implement:
                 Alumni membership program.
                 Student alumni program.
                 Parent’s association. Coordinate with Enrollment Services,
                 Dean of Students
                 Online community
                 Corporate alumni chapters
                 Alumni interest groups. Coordinate with the colleges, alumni
                   board, and volunteers.
                 Women’s program; African-American interest group

Alumni Strategic Plan                                                                January 2009

                           Assemble planning/work groups in support of interest groups. First
                            launch: women. Present activities and events as appropriate.
                           Implement programming as it is ready, including those listed above
                            and alumni of achievement awards, anniversary observance.
                           Continue to engage the alumni board in planning processes.
                           Develop messages, plan stories, work plan for alumni news and
                            online newsletters.
                           Develop improved alumni web presence.
                           Coordinate with president, provost, dean of students to improve
                           Implement alumni print and online newsletters.
                           Implement, grow, and assess new programs begun in fall ’08.
                            Survey audiences, modify as needed.
                           Coordinate with Career Services to define services/alumni
                           Aggressively seek to engage alumni in all aspects of the university.


Because all of these programs are new, the first 12-months’ (January- December ’09)
measure of success will be satisfactory implementation, constant analysis, revision, and
steady growth. More specific measurement targets will be established in year two and

Program Homes
Alumni Relations Office
Online community
Online newsletters
Parent’s Association
Career services support

Alumni Association
Corporate alumni chapters
Interest groups
Scholarship program
Alumni newsletter

Joint Relations/Association
Student Alumni Association
40th Anniversary
Miscellaneous events

Alumni Strategic Plan   January 2009


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