Alumni, students, and parents expect a great deal from Haverford and its transformative educational mission. In turn, Haverford must expect a great deal from alumni, as well as students and parents, as partners in sustaining the reputation and academic excellence that has long characterized the College, while furthering its commitment to the College’s values and community. Haverford with its small scale requires outsized volunteerism and generosity to keep pace with larger and wealthier academic peers.
To inspire such support, we will strengthen programming to enhance the alumni journey across all life stages. We seek to provide current value to alumni lives throughout their journeys, so that the Haverford community extends well beyond campus and four years of undergraduate study. Haverford will augment traditional programs such as Reunion with programs that connect intellectually, socially, and financially with the College, and to engage our alumni community through opportunities across various affinities, careers, identities, geographic locations, and ages. Goals include:
- Affinity groups. Build on successful models like the Haverford College Lawyers Network, Fords in Finance, the Multicultural Alumni Group, athletic teams, regional programs, and admission education sessions in order to connect alumni around topics and issues that are important to them. Assess interest for and launch new volunteer-driven affinity groups that serve as a vehicle to connect all interested alumni, including the previously disengaged, with the College and with each other.
- Virtual community. Leverage technology that strengthens alumni connections to what is going on at Haverford and among alumni around the world. Programs might include webinars, video chats, mobile-friendly reunion resources, virtual recruiting events, and more. Continue to develop our communications strategies to be as responsive as possible to alumni needs and preferences.
- Career support. In order for Haverford students and graduates to position themselves for productive careers in their fields of choice, help leverage our alumni and parent base as a vast resource of support in career networking and professional readiness. Strengthen the partnership between Institutional Advancement and the new Center for Career and Professional Advising to actively engage interested alumni and parents in the important work of demonstrating that a Haverford education provides a lifelong ability to succeed in ever-evolving professional landscapes.
- Enhanced reunions. Implement feedback from the Milestone Reunion Task Force recommendations made in 2014. Evaluate reunion-related best practices and prioritize possible enhancements. Some of these ideas include: stronger peer recruitment with greater lead time, student class ambassadors, different pricing structures, better dining options, and re-inventing volunteer roles.
- Haverford on the road. Haverford alumni have been clear that they seek greater opportunities for continued intellectual engagement with the College and with each other. Continue to offer Haverford Conversations and other opportunities for alumni to connect around intellectually focused events in major cities around the globe.
- Alumni travel. Pilot a Haverford educational trip featuring President Weiss in his area of scholarly expertise. Based on response, future trips could feature other topics, Haverford scholars, and trip leaders.
In all these endeavors, we will identify and recruit new volunteers, make the volunteer experience a meaningful and fulfilling role, and provide staff support needed for to achieve our shared goals.