Alumni Engagement Strategic Plan | Mount Allison

Mount Allison Alumni Engagement Strategic Plan 2022-2025: Moving Forward

Introduction

In 2039, Mount Allison University will enter its third century. Seventeen years feels like a lifetime, but it is the blink of an eye in the life of a 200-year-old institution. As Mount Allison's third century draws ever closer, it does so in a world that is more connected, more complex, and — at times — more confusing than Charles Frederick Allison, our founder, could have imagined.

What is clear is that the world needs active citizens prepared with the sort of education earned at Mount Allison now more than ever. We need to ensure that MtA is well positioned to do exactly what it has done for two centuries: produce bright, eager, and invested alumni. This guiding vision drives the mission, strategic objectives, and goals of the Alumni Engagement Strategic Plan.

Ad-hoc Alumni Engagement Strategic Plan Committee 2022

In spring of 2022, a group of engaged alumni and staff from diverse backgrounds were asked to take part in the Ad-hoc Alumni Strategic Plan Committee. Their task was to define the parameters of the consultation to ensure feedback from a diverse group of alumni, volunteers, students, staff, and faculty during the process. The ad-hoc committee then made recommendations to the Alumni Engagement Office on what they heard, and their feedback is the basis for the plan outlined below.

Over 360 alumni participated in the consultation process with a heavy emphasis on recent graduates, Indigenous alumni, and volunteers. The committee used various participatory techniques to illicit comments and responses. While the data was qualitative, the committee found common threads throughout the 11 virtual meetings, surveys, and in-person consultations held in spring of 2022.

There are five tactical pillars to the strategic plan. Each tactic will become the goals and objectives of the plan. Each goal will become a part of our programming for the next three years (2022-2025).

The vision, values, mission, tactics, goals, and objectives below were informed by the research conducted by the ad-hoc Alumni Engagement Strategic Plan Committee.

Vision statement: what we want to become

Our vision is to secure Mount Allison's third century by cementing our ability as alumni to remember, celebrate, and honour our history in ways that meaningfully elevate every element of the Mount Allison experience today and build a framework that nurtures an inspirational and impactful future for the institution and generations of students and graduates.

Values: what guides us

The Mount Allison Alumni Engagement Office is guided by the following values, which inform the decision making and programming of the office.

foster belonging instill #MountiePride lead, serve, and support
We are an inclusive and welcoming community committed to meaningful diversity and equality We increase pride in Mount Allison among students and alumni We empower and offer opportunities for alumni to contribute their time, treasure, talent, and testimony to Mount Allison
We are committed to reconciliation with Indigenous peoples We work to strengthen Mount Allison's reputation We provide support for the University's strategic direction and initiatives
We celebrate the alumni community and foster connectedness We create meaningful opportunities to become engaged and feel part of the Mount Allison community We strive for excellence, quality, creativity, and innovation in our alumni programs and volunteer experiences

Mission: who we are

Our mission is built in five strategic tactics: promoting, connecting, energizing, enhancing, and enabling alumni to become informed, engaged, and supportive of the Mount Allison community throughout their lives.

Goals and objectives are how we measure our success. We will use these tactics to set our annual goals and objectives.

Threaded throughout the strategic plan and annual goals and objectives will be a continued focus on communications, volunteering, and events that are mutually beneficial for alumni and the institution.

TACTIC 1: Energizing alumni on their roles as part of the MtA community

GOALS

Energizing alumni on their roles as part of the MtA community:

  • By educating students on their role as alumni and their continued connection to the school
  • By enabling everyone to discover the value of their role as MtA alumni to their lives and to the institution and develop a keen sense of reciprocity
  • By connecting alumni with staff and faculty to identify and offer opportunities to financially support the University
  • By creating opportunities for alumni to give of their time, treasure, talent, and testimony to the University

WORK PLAN (OBJECTIVES)

  • Develop an engagement plan with activities on campus for students to inform them on the role of alumni
  • Develop a comprehensive plan for alumni to participate in recruitment of prospective students
  • Develop a communication plan and activities in cooperation with Experiential Learning and Career Office on the benefits of networking with alumni
  • Promote stories on student social media highlighting the benefits of embracing their role as alumni
  • Develop a plan to have ten alumni per year as guest speakers in classes
  • Continue to offer events during Homecoming, Convocation, and Reunion that encourage students to interact with alumni
TACTIC 2: Enabling alumni volunteers to contribute meaningfully to the MtA community

GOALS

Enabling alumni volunteers to contribute meaningfully to the MtA community:

  • By ensuring volunteers understand the purpose of their roles
  • By stewarding and recognizing the contributions of alumni volunteers to create a positive volunteering experience
  • By prioritizing volunteer training to increase the probability of success for all stakeholders
  • By devising and communicating a menu of roles and tasks that are meaningful to alumni volunteers and to the MtA community

WORK PLAN (OBJECTIVES)

  • Launch a campaign to highlight volunteers and promote volunteer recruitment, with a goal of having 400 active alumni volunteers per year
  • Adopt a comprehensive “Volunteer Moves Management” program that ensures volunteers are properly recruited, trained, assigned, evaluated, and recognized
  • Implement a new alumni volunteer recognition program
  • Implement virtual volunteer training programs
  • Recruit and train volunteers to organize alumni events in their community
TACTIC 3: Connecting alumni, faculty, staff, and students

GOALS

Connecting alumni, faculty, staff, and students:

  • By connecting faculty with alumni to offer academic programming and extraordinary events
  • By connecting alumni with students through mentorship
  • By connecting alumni with staff to increase opportunities for experiential learning opportunities
  • By informing alumni on academic developments and creating ways alumni can enhance academic courses and curriculum programs

WORK PLAN (OBJECTIVES)

  • Develop a program of in-person and virtual events featuring faculty speaking to an alumni audience
  • Develop multi-platform communications program to inform alumni on new academic programming to encourage engagement and recruitment of students
  • Re-establish Alumni Mentorship Program in collaboration with Experiential Learning and Career Office
  • Collaborate with Development Office to submit names and companies of alumni who are willing and able to employ a MtA intern to the Experiential Learning and Career Office
TACTIC 4: Promoting the role of the Alumni Engagement Office

GOALS

Promoting the role of the Alumni Engagement Office:

  • By introducing and promoting the role of the Alumni Board and the Engagement Strategic Plan to the alumni community
  • By partnering with the University Archives to share our stories and work on special projects
  • By increasing the number of alumni who refer prospective students to Mount Allison
  • By educating alumni on the importance of contact information

WORK PLAN (OBJECTIVES)

  • Develop communication plan to promote the new alumni strategic plan within the alumni community, including an annual report to Alumni on the progress of this strategic plan.
  • Develop a three year “contact information” strategy to increase the percentage of contactable alumni (KPI target to be set in year one)
  • Develop three-year plan to honour special anniversaries and individuals such as the sesquicentennial of The Argosy and Mary Electra Adams through extraordinary events and through the Record
  • Host two virtual events featuring the University archivist
  • Increase the number of alumni who refer prospective students from 100 to 200 by 2025
  • Increase the number of MANTRA (Mount Allison Network of Teachers for Recruitment and Admissions) volunteers to 15 by 2025
TACTIC 5: Enhancing the strategic role of the Alumni Board

GOALS

Enhancing the strategic role of the Alumni Board:

  • By communicating the goals of the capital campaign and other philanthropic goals to alumni
  • By increasing direct communication to alumni from Alumni Board
  • By building the capacity of the Board to interact with the alumni community and with the strategic work of the institution
  • By enhancing the Board's role as advocates and the voice of alumni to the University

WORK PLAN (OBJECTIVES)

  • Develop a Board-led, fully-integrated alumni role in the next capital campaign
  • Ensure that, when appropriate, members of the Alumni Board are represented on senior hiring committees of the University by developing a communication plan to increase online visibility of board policies, activities, and minutes from board meetings
  • Ensure that emails and print materials sent to alumni are signed by the Board of Directors and speaks in their voice
  • Have Alumni Board Directors host events
  • Include a board update in every Allisonian Update
  • Increase Alumni Board training, budget, and offer opportunities for directors to host events on and off campus

Conclusion

The new Mount Allison Alumni Engagement Strategic Plan will guide decision making at the Alumni Engagement Office for the next three years. A comprehensive work plan will be developed each year to bring to life our vision, mission, tactics, goals, and objectives. While the strategic plan must be inspiring, it also must be attainable with the realities of both the operating budget and human resource capacity of the office. Prioritizing the needs of both the institution and its alumni will allow the plan to fulfill its goal of being a visionary document for all stakeholders.

Questions or comments? Email alumni@mta.ca.

The Mount Allison Alumni Strategic Plan 2022-25 (pdf) is also available to download.