Principles of Practice for Alumni Relations Professionals at Educational Institutions
These principles are intended to supplement and complement the CASE Statement of Ethics, which was revised by the CASE Board of Trustees on 12 March 2020.
Alumni relations professionals develop programs that are valued by alumni; build enduring and mutually beneficial relationships, inspire loyalty, volunteerism, and financial support; strengthen the institution’s reputation; and involve alumni in meaningful activities to advance the institution’s mission.
The principles below are intended to assist alumni relations professionals in fulfilling their role in a manner that will benefit their institution, its alumni, and the profession of alumni relations.
We have a fundamental obligation to:
- Advance the mission of our institution and serve and support its alumni in an ethical and socially responsible manner.
- Reflect in our work the values of our institution, including an abiding respect for diverse ideas, interests, and individuals.
- Reinforce through our words and actions the principles of honesty, integrity, and trust, which form the basis for long-term relationships and engagement with the institution's alumni and other constituencies.
- Place the welfare of our institution and its alumni above personal gain; avoid conflicts of interest; take responsibility for our decisions; and treat colleagues, alumni, and the public with courtesy and respect.
- Ensure information provided by alumni is always handled in a professional and confidential manner.
We are most successful at advancing and serving our institutions when:
- Our efforts support the interaction between the institution and its alumni to advance the mission of the institution.
- We provide strategic counsel to our institution's leadership, convey the viewpoints and interests of alumni, and participate in the formulation of strategic initiatives or institutional policies.
- We base our work on best practice that informs our understanding of the institution's alumni and measures progress toward established goals.
We best serve the needs and interests of the institution and its alumni when we:
- Promote and embrace alumni as vital stakeholders in our institutions.
- Advocate for alumni, representing their interests in working with institutional departments and constituencies as well as the broader community.
- Build meaningful, long-term, mutually beneficial relationships with alumni.
- Provide inspiring and engaging activities which are relevant to alumni and are informed by data, insight, and feedback.
- Provide alumni with relevant information concerning the work of the alumni relations team.
- Celebrate the impact that alumni have on our institution, the community, and the world.
- Build and influence future alumni and alumni leaders.
- Share the institutional mission, vision, and goals broadly.
- Educate students about their future responsibilities and opportunities as alumni.
- Ensure the mission and goals of alumni programs are consistent with and support the mission and goals of the institution.
- Encourage alumni to support their alma mater through volunteer service, leadership, advocacy, and philanthropy.
- Involve alumni to serve the broader community as ambassadors for their alma mater and education in general.
- Encourage student participation in alumni programs, services, and events.
- Empower alumni to pursue volunteer and leadership opportunities throughout the institution.
- Engage alumni in setting strategy, seeking their ideas, input, and feedback.
- Encourage alumni to leverage their networks on behalf of the institution.
The principles were adopted initially by the CASE Board of Trustees in March 2005 and subsequently updated by the CASE Commission on Alumni Relations on 11 March 2020.