Alumni Leader Resources
If you have recently become a volunteer or joined a local alumni board, this is an exciting time for you to grow, learn, and create a big impact in your alumni community. The Alumni Relations team is here to help with guidance, context, and historical data for your market.
The Booth alumni leader resources provided here are designed to spark ideas, provide best practices and guidelines, and help you understand how we operate.
General Overview and Expectations
Chicago Booth has a global community of more than 55,000 alumni and many clubs and organizations. We also have class- or cohort-based opportunities to volunteer. Chicago is our largest alumni market, but our community extends to hundreds of cities across the globe. Your events and activities should mirror your market in size. Alumni relations will strategically partner with you to drive success.
What Makes a Club Successful?
Successful clubs are driven by alumni volunteers who care about connecting alumni to other alumni and extending the thought leadership of the school through events. They are able to plan and lead boards of other volunteers whose common mission is to build the alumni community. Alumni relations evaluates club health on four major key performance indicators: leadership, programming, communication, and collaboration.
- Regional clubs should collaborate with affinity groups such as the Chicago Booth Women’s Network or the Chicago Booth Black Alumni Association.
- Your organization board can help current students who end up in your region organize treks and mixers with alumni who might connect them to top employers.
- Research centers might be visiting your city and they can make helpful introductions and collaborate on relevant events, where possible.
- Share your successes and best practices with other Chicago Booth alumni leaders around the globe.
- Each club should have a board consisting of at least two members.
- We recommend a two-year term limit for leaders.
- We recommend four board meetings per year.
- Clubs should host at least two events per year. (Programming should be scaled to market size.)
- Events can be community based or social, or provide intellectual content.
- Your club board will choose the type of event, speakers, and a venue.
- Your club will have its own website hosted by Booth with some customizable content.
- Your events will be promoted on our alumni events page and in a regular newsletter to regional alumni.
- Custom emails and surveys may be requested but used sparingly.
- Your club owns and operates your own social media groups.
- Typically, we charge a nominal registration fee to cover costs of food and beverage and any other associated costs. This fee varies depending on the event.
- Chicago Booth alumni do not need to be dues-paying members of the alumni association to attend events, so the registration fees help subsidize the alumni gatherings.
- You should expect turnout to be between 1 and 10 percent of the total number of alumni in your market.
- Even an event with five to 10 people can be successful with the right curation. (You set capacity.)
- Alumni Relations does not consider the number of alumni to be a success factor in alumni events.
- Cafés, bars, and restaurants work well for mixers and social events.
- For speaker events and panel discussions, try to find corporate hosts (typically the speaker’s employer) through alumni connections or coworking spaces.
- Brainstorm ideas on relevant and timely topics with your board.
- Evaluate your alumni base to identify top employers and possible thought leadership.
- Develop a detailed, precise, and considerate plan for written outreach.
- Create a long list of potential speakers.
- The best moderators know the speaker they are interviewing. Try to choose a moderator who is a colleague, friend, or classmate of the speaker.
- If the moderator is not acquainted with the speaker, provide a list of questions and topics for the moderator to cover. Suggest that the moderator and speaker set up a pre-event phone call to practice and discuss details.