International Alumni and Fundraising Program



International Alumni and Fundraising Program- Part 1



Creating International Alumni Clubs

Over the course of my administrative career, I had the opportunity to be responsible not only for the enrollment and retention of international students but also for creating international alumni and fundraising programs.

This “30,000 foot” view allowed me to integrate the international recruitment program with international alumni and fundraising activities.

While this administrative structure would not work at many schools and is certainly not for the faint of heart, it does have advantages. My next two blog posts will outline the steps I took to create international alumni clubs and how I raised money from international parents.

If you are responsible for enrolling international students, you may want to share this blog post with the administrators in your school responsible for alumni programs.

If you want to develop an international alumni program, you should begin before international students register for classes.

I would meet with all of the admission counselors and ask them to identify the international students they recruited who enrolled and who would be good candidates for becoming class agents. We began, at this early stage in the international students’ academic career, to groom graduates to support international alumni activities after graduation.

I created an international convocation and orientation program for both new international students and parents and began the “friend raising” process before classes began.

We created a robust international student services program and international students were encouraged to become actively involved in international student activities. A specific administrator in the Center for International Education continued the cultivation process over the next four years.

Fast forward to the beginning of senior year. Students who demonstrated an interest in participating in international alumni activities were introduced to the director of alumni affairs and were given the rules and regulations of how to become a class agent and set up an international alumni club.

I will not pretend that this was an easy thing to do. Anytime the staffs of international students, student services and alumni affairs are asked to work together synergistically, turf wars erupt. But it can administratively work and in my case, it did.

I was able to create five international alumni clubs. The international graduates in those clubs assisted our international recruitment program. They met with prospective international applicants from their country and encouraged them to apply. It was a meaningful way for international students to stay connected and added credibility to our international recruitment program.

In my next blog I will share with you how I raised funds from international parents.

This entry was posted in Colleges, Foreign Students, International Education, International students, The New College Guide, Universities by Marguerite Dennis. Bookmark the permalink.

About Marguerite Dennis

Marguerite Dennis has been recruiting internationally for over 25 years, first at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. and then at Suffolk University in Boston, Massachusetts. During that time she was responsible for establishing a branch campus for Suffolk University in Dakar, Senegal and Madrid, Spain. Marguerite increased the international student population at Suffolk University by 193% from 1993 to 2011 and increased the number of study abroad programs by 135%, from 20 to 47. She monitored the recruitment programs for Suffolk University in 20 countries and hired a network of 10 international educational consultants. She signed agreements in Viet Nam, Hong Kong, Kuwait, Germany, Mexico, France and Argentina.

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