Conferences & Training
Programme - Alumni Relations Institute 2019

Wednesday 13 February 2019

10:30 - 11:00  Registration and Refreshments

11:00 - 12:00   Welcome from CASE and Introduction to the Faculty
This interactive session will get the Institute rolling! Following a welcome from CASE, your faculty will share their careers paths (the highs, the lows and everything in between) and how these experiences have helped to shape their careers.

12:00 - 13:00  Tutorial 1: Aims and Objectives for the Institute and Getting to Know Each Other
Before arriving for the Institute, delegates will be divided into Tutorials, each led by a faculty member. These small group meetings are sprinkled throughout the Institute and will serve as touch points to ensure you're getting what you need out of each of the sessions and the Institute as a whole.

13:00 - 14:00   Topical Lunch - tables designated by topic and hosted by a faculty member.

14:00 - 15:00   Plenary 1: The Alumni Journey
Much like the consumer journeys that underpin the retail industry, graduates also embark on their own journeys with their institutions. We know that engagement is not a linear path but is in fact a series of peaks and valleys. It's important that we understand how these journeys might take shape and how best to design an engagement strategy around them. This session will set out the premise for mapping the alumni journey - what might it look like, how you might respond, and the ideal outcomes.
Christine Fairchild,
Director of Alumni Relations, University of Oxford
Molly Southwood, Deputy Director and Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Bath

15:00 - 15:30   Refreshment and Networking Break

15:30 - 16:20   Elective Session - Choose One

1. What do you Need for a Strong Alumni Relations Programme?

2. Creating a Communications Plan

New to alumni relations? Or setting up an alumni relations programme from scratch? Or on your own or with one or two staff? Come and talk through the building blocks and fundamentals of starting out, running a small shop, as well as how to overcome common hurdles in the early stages of a programme with two people who have done just that.

Aba Quartey, Alumni Relations Manager, Chevening Secretariat

David Williams, Director, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, University College Cork

The traditional mainstay of alumni relations communications, the print magazine, has now been joined - or even replaced - by a range of other communications, particularly digital channels. More immediate, more up to date, more relevant, more interactive, more bespoke and just plain ‘more' communications.
In this session we will explore what the new norms in the world of communications to (and with) alumni are and what you might expect to see in a successful communications plan.

Christine Fairchild, Director of Alumni Relations, University of Oxford

Phil Steel, Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Leeds

16:30 - 17:30   Elective Session - Choose One

1. How to Reconcile Alumni Relations With Fundraising

2.Increase your Global Footprint Through Alumni Groups, Chapters and Volunteers

3. Getting to the Point of Events: Ensuring Your Events Help Achieve Your Goals

Alumni relations and fundraising are often part off the same office in Europe, but how do you make them part of the same team? The traditional model of fundraising is changing. The gift-pyramid is no longer pyramid-shaped with alumni relations at the base; now it is just the very few high-net-worth individuals at the top who can make the biggest difference to our institutions. Because of this alumni relations is increasingly being called upon to help cultivate and steward these high-net-worth individuals. This session explores the big changes that are affecting our profession and looks at some of the practical steps teams of varying sizes can take to ensure alumni relations and fundraising work respectfully together and also help each other along the way.

David Williams, Director, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, University College Cork

Molly Southwood, Deputy Director and Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Bath

For most institutions, our alumni networks reach across the globe and creating connections from a distance can be a challenge. In this session Christine and Aba will present alternative models of how to build engaged alumni communities. If, like Oxford, it is a formal web of alumni groups that you would like to establish or grow, Christine will share her experience of creating and managing formal groups, the joys and challenges associated with volunteer management and how to incentivise, reward and hold these groups accountable. Or if your set up means that you don't have (or want) formal alumni groups, Aba will guide you through some options to identify and mobilise your volunteers to deliver meaningful engagement without creating formal structures. Please bring along your challenges along with any great examples of building engagement from a distance to share too.

Christine Fairchild, Director of Alumni Relations, University of Oxford

Aba Quartey, Alumni Relations Manager, Chevening Secretariat

Do you know why you are running an event and how it links to your strategic goals? Your alumni might enjoy it, but do you know they value it? We'll work through how you manage and assess the impact of your events, particularly:
• Developing goals and outcomes for events
• Objective setting and measurement
• Quantifying evaluation

Phil Steel, Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Leeds

Amy Webb, Head of Alumni Relations, King's College London

17:30 - 19:00 Free time

19:00 - 19:30 Drinks Reception

19:30   Dinner at Brighton Beach Club


Thursday 14 February 2019

07:45-09:00   Breakfast

09:00 - 09:50 Plenary Session 2: Why Strategy Matters in Alumni Relations

Creating and communicating a strategy for your alumni relations activity is more important than ever. A successful Alumni Relations operation should be tied into the institution's larger goals, tangible, measurable, collaborative and ultimately, worth investing in. In this session, we'll demystify strategy and show how it can link to institutional goals. We will explore how best to arrive at a strategy: what the components might be, how it lives alongside other institutional partners, how it is communicated and ultimately how it is measured. Participants are encouraged to bring copies of their institution's wider strategic plans as well as their Alumni Relations strategic plans (if they have them).

Christine Fairchild, Director of Alumni Relations, University of Oxford
David Williams, Director, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, University College Cork

10:00 - 11:00   Tutorial 2: Making Sure you are on Track and Delving Deeper into What You're Learning

11:00 - 11:30 Refreshments and networking break

11:30   Elective Session 3 (choose one)

1. Making an Impact: Is Print Dead?

2. Engaging Students to Create Loyal Alumni

3. Managing Volunteers, Good Practice and Programmes

As we watch more and more printed newspapers migrate to a digital format, is there still room for print in Alumni Relations? Do alumni respond differently to print-based communications than they do to electronic outreach? Is it as simple as a generational preference for one over the other? Do you actually need a magazine at all? Is it a valuable channel or an outdated and expensive vanity communication? This session will explore the difference between the formats and, in particular the ways in which alumni magazines and newsletters have been reformatted to accommodate new trends and reader behaviours. Participants are encouraged to bring copies of their institutions alumni magazines for review and

David Williams, Director, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, University College Cork

Phil Steel, Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Leeds

Students are the alumni of the future and engaging them during their studies should lead to an engaged alumni body. In this workshop we will talk about what students need from alumni and how we can deliver this. We will also look at how this work can support institutional priorities and we will share examples of best practice - please bring yours!

Molly Southwood, Deputy Director and Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Bath

Amy Webb, Head of Alumni Relations, King's College London

Volunteers can make all the difference to an organisation: they can provide support for areas where your budget can't reach and allow you to accomplish more than you can with the staffing constraints you no doubt have. But they also come with challenges. They must be chosen carefully, managed thoughtfully, have clear goals and be held accountable. Sometimes they even need to be fired! This session will look at how to develop and support a dedicated and productive cadre of volunteers.

Christine Fairchild,
Director of Alumni Relations, University of Oxford

Aba Quartey, Alumni Relations Manager, Chevening Secretariat

 

12:30 - 13:30   Lunch

13:30 - 14:20  Plenary Session 3: Alumni Advocacy - How Gamification can Motivate Alumni to Help You Achieve Your Aims
In this engaging and interactive session Pete Jenkins will help us understand brand advocacy in the context of gamification and educational institutions. He'll look at Gamified Motivation - what it is, what it's not and how it works. We'll discuss what impact rewards and recognition have on game players and explore strategies for engagement and alumni motivation through the lens of games.
Pete Jenkins, Leader, GAMIFICATION+ LTD

14:30 - 15:20 Elective Session 4 (choose one)

1. Raising the Profile of Alumni Relations Across your Institution

2. Building Your Database: Strategies for Finding Lost Alumni

We all appreciate the importance of an engaged alumni community to help reach institutional objectives but not everyone does! To some of our colleagues our work feels like a frivolous waste of time. This session will look at how we can take practical steps to address some of the common misconceptions of an Alumni Relations Office and create more buy-in and appreciation for the work we do. We will discuss sharing the impact of alumni engagement across your institutions, and how we can seek out friendly champions who can help to embed our efforts within other departments.

Molly Southwood, Deputy Director and Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Bath

Amy Webb, Head of Alumni Relations, King's College London

So you need to build up your contactable alumni database from a low base, or get a more complete data picture of your alumni to take your activity to the next level. Where do you start and what do you prioritise? This session will highlight the tools you have at your disposal, showcase and share ideas - from the straightforward to the more creative - for finding lost alumni and updating your database. We'll talk through the challenges and opportunities of growing your database in a post-GDPR world. And we'll ask just how ‘lost' are our ‘lost alumni' anyway?

 Phil Steel, Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Leeds

Aba Quartey, Alumni Relations Manager, Chevening Secretariat

15:20 - 15:40   Refreshments and networking break

15:40 - 16:30   Elective session 5 (choose one)

1. Roundtable: Managing Alumni Relations Teams (Including Those with Just 1 Person)

2. Roundtable: Starting to Think about an Alumni Brand

The First 5 Years: Building Momentum Amongst Young Alumni

Alumni Relations is a people-powered industry, and very few institutions have enough alumni relations staff to resource all of the programmes they'd like to offer.
This session will look at how alumni relations teams function, who they collaborate with to get things done, and how volunteers are a valuable part of the team. We'll be sharing different models for the ‘optimum' team structure - clue: there is definitely more than one!

Molly Southwood, Deputy Director and Head of Alumni Engagement, University of Bath

Amy Webb, Head of Alumni Relations, King's College London

How to mobilise your alumni to be ambassadors and strategic influencers for your institution. Avoid the me-too-ism of alumni relations and develop strategies and programmes that recognise the uniqueness of your institution and of your alumni community. By creating authentic and institution-specific engagements, you can unlock the real power of alumni relations to the strategic benefit of your institution.

David Williams, Director, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving, University College Cork

Christine Fairchild, Director of Alumni Relations, University of Oxford

The first few years after graduation are a crucial time for your institution to lay the foundation for a fruitful, lifelong relationship with its alumni. Recent graduates, however, have just entered a new phase of their lives away from the university, and are very busy building their careers. Building a tight community of stakeholders with affinity, and eventually fostering a culture of engagement, implies offering value first, focusing on content that is useful in their particular situations. This roundtable will discuss concrete strategies to make young alumni feel their Alma Mater never stops caring for them.

Martine Torfs, Director, Alumni Relations, KU Leuven

16:40 - 18:00 Careers Clinic 

19:30   Dinner 

Friday 15 February 2019

07:30 - 09:00   Breakfast 

09:00 - 09:50   Plenary Session 5: Alumni-Alma Mater Relations: Global Perspective
A view of the overall global state of the alumni higher education sector drawing upon findings from CASE's global Alumni Relations surveys. Key highlights of the presentation will focus on the benefits of alumni advocacy supporting reputation and other non-financial considerations. Examples will be presented from institutions across the globe that have successfully used their alumni to build and manage institutional strategic goals.
Yashraj Jain,
Research Manager, CASE Europe 

10:00 - 11:00   Tutorial Wrap Up

11:00 - 11:30 Refreshment Break

11:30 - 12:30 Case Study Workshop

It's all very well in theory, but how do you put what you've learnt into practice? Working in three predesignated groups (check the handbook for details) attendees will tackle different strategic scenarios and work together to apply what they have learnt in order to create a plan of action. Not only will this give a real sense of the kinds of strategic decision making required, it will also provide the added real life challenges of working in a group and under time pressure.

12:30 - 13:30 Case Study Feedback and closing Remarks

13:30 Lunch

14:30 Institute Finishes


Kindly supported by: 

Aluminati


CASE Europe reserves the right to change the programme at any time