Whether it’s supporting scholarships, mentoring a student, advocating for the University of Minnesota with the legislature or cheering for the maroon and gold, alumni involvement helps make the institution better, according to University of Minnesota Alumni Association (UMAA) leaders.
Lisa Lewis, UMAA’s president and CEO, outlined the continued impact alumni have on the University system during her annual report to the Board of Regents today.
“The state of the alumni is strong,” said Lewis. “Their time, extraordinary talent, philanthropy, loyalty and passion help shape the University’s future. We are truly grateful for their collective efforts on behalf of their alma mater.”
In the past year, UMAA worked to engage alumni through a vast array of experiences, providing 263 in-person and virtual alumni events, including:
Continuing MN Sparks events, which deliver faculty excellence to alumni and communities in every corner of the state. Collaborating with campus partners, UMAA has hosted seven to date, with five more scheduled through April 2018.
Expanding the Corporate Alumni Network, adding four new companies: General Mills, Land O’Lakes, Medtronic, and UnitedHealth Group. Joining existing networks at Target, Best Buy and US Bank, new alumni network members participated in a Business Bowl on campus to encourage networking with coworkers and other graduates.
Marketing U of M license plates, which support student scholarships. Campaigns are currently running at Department of Motor Vehicle offices statewide, as well as places across the Twin Cities, Duluth, Crookston and Morris.
Alumni also raised their voice for the University at the Capitol, combining with faculty, staff and students to make more than 20,000 contacts with lawmakers. Additionally, more than 40,000 alumni contributed $171.2 million in financial support, accounting for more than half of all donations to the University last year.
Looking ahead, UMAA plans to develop a new five-year strategic plan, emphasize current students and recent alumni, and use engagement data to better serve alumni and expand relationships.
Founded in 1904, the University of Minnesota Alumni Association connects alumni with each other, supports student success and advances the University of Minnesota. The Alumni Association advocates for the University and its alumni with a credible, independent, and collaborative voice. Members make Alumni Association programs strong and ensure that all 477,000 alumni of the Twin Cities campus share a sense of belonging to our vibrant global community of learners, makers and doers.