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Nontraditional Alumni

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Boot Campus
CURRENTS Article Universities often struggle to engage and retain veterans. Like other nontraditional students, veterans are more likely to be older, married, and have full-time jobs and children. They aren't always interested in the traditional university experience, and they may have disabilities that require special accommodations. So how do you reach out to the veterans on your campus? How can you ensure they become as loyal to your institution as they are to their fellow service members? The first step may be to better understand their struggles.

The Other Senior Class
CURRENTS Article Lifelong learners are advancement professionals' dream supporters: They're loyal to the institution, they have plenty of free time, and they're passionate about education and giving back to society. They could be untapped sources for volunteering, leading, or fundraising.

Making Their Presence Felt
CURRENTS Article Andrew Morrison at the University of Liverpool writes about how the U.K. institution has been able to engage—and in some cases raise gifts from—alumni of the university’s online program. He discusses findings from the university’s survey of online alumni and covers the ways that engagement of online graduates is different from and similar to engaging traditional graduates.

On the Ground Floor
CURRENTS Article At Texas Woman's University, the alumni association was involved in the creation of an online student honor society, which is now helpful in turning those stellar students into engaged alumni.

Connecting with Commuters
CURRENTS Article With decreased government funding for higher education the world over, many public two- and four-year commuter institutions are paying more attention to fundraising, which means reconnecting with alumni and building relationships. Since commuter schools are not likely to have much success with traditional alumni programming such as homecomings, class reunions, and tailgate parties, these institutions are finding other ways to engage former students and foster a sense of community.

Talking Points: Studying in Cyberspace
CURRENTS Article Will the growing numbers of online students become committed alumni?

Now You See Them, Now You Don't
CURRENTS Article More and more institutions are offering online degrees. If advancement professionals fail to engage and cultivate these alumni, then a philanthropic windfall could be frittered away.

Different Breed
CURRENTS Article Nontraditional students are usually less involved in the social aspect of campus life than their traditional counterparts. Although their education experience might be positive, they might not feel particularly tied to a campus on which they spend relatively little time. This can make nontraditional students harder to reach as alumni; however, alumni professionals who understand their needs and recognize their constraints can encourage them to become an active part of the alumni association.

When Graduates Break the Generational Mold
CURRENTS Article Traditional institutions often categorize alumni by graduation year. But for commuter campuses and community colleges segmenting alumni by graduation date isn’t a useful strategy. To market to a nontraditional alumni base most of these institutions have devised their own form of lifestyle marketing by concentrating on this population’s interest in career development. This article will be useful to alumni relations officers, who can learn about the categorization methods used for nontraditional alumni.

Breaking Tradition
CURRENTS Article Alumni officers at three nontraditional campuses Indiana University-Purdue University at Fort Wayne, University of Baltimore, and University of Michigan, Dearborn—describe programs targeted to nontraditional alumni, including bus trips, mini-universities, lunches with faculty members, networking events, mentoring programs, professional development opportunities, corporate receptions, and alumni travel programs.

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