Is alumni your university’s superpower?

Dear Friends,

First a big welcome, to the many new people, to this space – I was delighted to connect with you last week at the conference!

“If your university has a problem to solve – aspiring more international students, increasing student engagement, employability — whatever the problem, alumni are the solution.”

In my discussions with many alumni-facing professionals at the Vienna event, this was the one comment that seemed to open so many conversations!

Let me be clear – I am not saying that alumni are there waiting to respond to every university target. It is much deeper. Alumni are out there transforming our world in ordinary extraordinary ways. These are the alumni that:

  • encourage reflection
  • explore with curiosity
  • enlighten all aspects of their lives, and
  • empower and inspire others through their generosity
Yes, The Alumni Way traits in action! Alumni and their extraordinary ordinary lives becomes the social proof to inspire prospective students, create relatable role models and offer career insights. It’s the alumni professionals role to:

  • educate your organization internally on the power of alumni
  • energize alumni to see the value of lifelong connection to their alma mater
  • engage alumni by facilitating their participation in activities across the organization
  • excite alumni leaders to take roles as your best advocates for alumni engagement


Your challenge this week:

For alumni professionals: Which of these “E”s is the most challenging for you to implement and why? Take it step-by-step and consider one thing you can do to progress this “E” by the end of Alumni Friday! Here’s a recent blog post I wrote to help inspire alumni innovation!

For students and alumni: Your “E” is enthusiasm – what makes your heart sing about your (past or current) university experience? Consider one way to reconnect with that initiative, sport, club, academic subject or experience – reach out and find out ways alumni can help enhance current students while enthusing alumni (2 more “E”s and a win-win!) – check out this podcast for some ideas ‘bursting with enthusiasm’ for alumni!

Sending warm wishes from Porto and the ICARe conference – more insights from this event next week!

Yours with alumni inspiration,


Quote from the book

“As alumni we are an important part of this public good and the university ecosystem.”

The Alumni Way, p.131



Photo below: The other most popular talking point at the Alumni-Clubs conference? My photos near my home in County Donegal in the West of Ireland. Well here’s another taken no less than 24 hours after leaving Vienna…are you ready to forge a new alumni (relations) path?