How to Start an Alumni Chapter
The Alumni Association offers a broad range of resources to volunteers motivated to assist the university in developing new alumni chapters. Alumni chapters generally begin with a small group of dedicated graduates with similar interests and support from a campus department, program or region. An alumni chapter can do many different things. It can provide networking and professional development opportunities for alumni and current students in the field, raise funds and awareness in the community or serve as a social outlet for fellow members of the Herd.
Chapters can be organized around academic affiliation, special interest, cultural identity or geographic region. The MU Alumni Association supports chartered chapters supported by Association memberships. The following steps outline the process for starting an alumni chapter:
Steps for getting started
Get in touch with 5-10 alumni and/or Marshall University supporters through business or personal contacts who are interested in providing volunteer leadership for the chapter. Members of the leadership team will serve as the chapter officers. The role of the leadership team is to:
1. Generate chapter interest and membership
2. Set the vision and direction for the chapter
3. Slate volunteers to serve as officers and committee chairs
4. Plan the initial programs
5. Complete the necessary paperwork to officially charter
Contact the Office of Alumni Relations for support in generating interest among those in your selected constituency group and/or geographic location to help set a date, time and place to hold a startup meeting.
Groups must identify a chapter leader and include a minimum of 5-10 initial chapter leaders who are members of the MU Alumni Association and who have agreed to serve the chapter. The initial leadership team will be asked to complete a standard university background check and fill out documentation related to the handling of alumni data and best practice policies.
Click on the link below to fill out the chapter application form to get started.
There are many reasons why people want to come together and connect with each other and the university. The group needs to develop their unique purpose and mission for the new chapter. Who do you serve? Why should I join? What activities will the chapter sponsor? These are all questions that will be asked by your future members that need to be answered before you start. Guidelines and sample mission statements are available for review.
All alumni chapters share in these four principles:
- Student Recruitment & Enrollment
- Professional Mentoring & Networking
- Fundraising & Scholarships
- University Support & Fellowship
After the prospective chapter has met with the Office of Alumni Relations and discussed the goals and objectives of an alumni chapter, and a formal chapter leadership team has been formed, chapter members will be invited to join a virtual launch call with university leadership to discuss direction and next steps.
During this meeting, chapter leaders will have an opportunity to learn about why chapters are vital to the growth of the university and ask questions of university leadership.
After this call, your chapter is officially established and ready for its first official meeting to get started promoting Marshall University in your area!
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