View Full Version : Active-Alumni relations

04-02-2004, 04:09 PM
Hi guys~

As a younger... but not immediately graduated alumna... I wanted to know how your chapter's active-alum relations are?

I find it somewhat frustrating because my emails and letters to my chapter-- which I'm willing to help out in any way necessary-- are ignored. I remember as an active it was nearly impossible to get alumni support... so now that I'm on the other side and taking the initiative to contact THEM makes it a bit disheartening. I've tried to find out when meetings are being held and receive no response. When the chapter sends invites to degrees or pledge events, they announce them with only two or three days notice (impossible for nearly any alumni to plan for), and because our chapter had a literal death and rebirth, there's very little connection to the chapter because all but one line of the sorority are dead-- I feel completely disconnected to them.

Any recommendations?

~ Mel.

04-04-2004, 07:00 PM
Wow, our alumni are really supportive of us...soemtimes we forget that they are indeed alumni!! lol

But one thing we do here at Eta Delta is have an annual retreat with actives and alumni...and while there we not only learn about the sorority and the chapter's history, we learn about each other.

Also, seeign as yoru chapter was established right before mine (Eta Gamma, Eta Delta) I'm sure you guys celebrated your 20th aniiversary some time ago...try havign a celebration in honor of 20 years in the bond of Tau Beta Sigma and invite them out to tell all the stories about how they chartered, and the progression from then to now:)

04-04-2004, 10:06 PM
Actually, there was a 20th anniversary party last evening. Few alumni showed up because active sisters didn't bother to contact many of them for invites-- and some who ASKED about the party were promised invites or information, and none was ever sent.

I attempted to get to the party, but was late (it was on a boat... so it left dock and I was stuck onshore). From what I heard from the alumni, the division between actives and alumni was so strong that most of the alumni felt like they weren't really wanted there and spent the evening elsewhere on the ship.

Alumni did try to talk to them about some of the history-- because Eta Gamma has a LOT of missing history-- our chapter literally fell apart and was restarted only five years ago. But whenever alumni try to offer to help, our emails and letters go ignored.

It's depressing-- I honestly feel like I want to try to adopt myself out to another chapter.

04-05-2004, 01:19 PM
Don't try to get adopted by another chapter...just keep trying!

I know VERY well about Eta Gamma's almost disapearring.

My suggestion for you is this...
Organize your alumni - not always, but SOMETIMES, students feel awkward with alumni. The other reason is because they are BUSY being students. SO, if you organize the alumni with ONE point of contact with the alumni and ONE with the actives...it'll be easier. If the alumni help create the list of people to be contacted and help write articles for alumni newsletters, it will help.

Also, the next thing would be this, what are you offering? And I'm not saying that you ARE doing this, but some alumni have been known to head back to their chapters (again, not saying you) and impose themselves and not allow the actives to develop. Is it possible that if you aren't doing this, another alumni has or is doing this so they are therefore avoiding. Not saying it's right that they would ignore the help, just throw yourself back into their thoughts.

BUT, PLEASE TRY! TBS needs their alums...if nothing else, get involved with the NEDAA and find other ways to help.

Sorry for the frustration!

04-05-2004, 05:08 PM
Hi Kathy~

Thanks for your response. After our 20th anniversary cruise this weekend, I've been happy to hear from four sisters who noticed I had missed the boat (literally) and wanted to make sure things were cool on my end. I've heard about their end-of-term meetings and plans, and hope to get to at least two events before the end of the school year-- maybe to get some requests on things to help them with over the summer while they're off all over the place.

Actually your comments about being a liason from the alumni end of things was what I had in mind-- since it's often intimidating for actives to talk to the alumni who range so much in age. :) Especially since Eta Gamma has such a gap between the older alumni and newer sisters... we definitely need two people working on repairing that relationship-- it's too much for a single active sister to do in many respects, and since I have some personal contacts already, it might help to have the active alumni secretary working on keeping the known alumni up to date on what's going on while an alumni representative works on finding the whereabouts of missing people.

I also see and understand what you're talking about with alumni coming in and wanting to dictate how things should happen-- definitely not what I want to do, but I could definitely see some of the alumni from my "era" and prior wanting to do that. They (and I) have to remember that it's no longer our chapter-- we're the background support when they need it, but they are the ones who need to mold the chapter and direct it into the future.

My ideas for helping them were mostly background secretarial stuff-- with the exception of being an alumni liason, the rest are things that really are "extras" more than day to day operations-- I don't want to get into the middle of that since I'm no longer an active.

My personal thoughts for involvement were the following:

1) Offering to be the alumni liason to update the alumni database (and keep a backup copy for when it's needed in case people move away from the university and things would get "lost"). This would also help because I can help keep the lines of communication open so hopefully announcements can be made in a timely manner for alumni to be able to attend events.

2) Offer to be the maintainer of the chapter website, both financially and physically, since it's often a tough thing to do when pep and marching band are in full swing. (It's one of the things I do professionally, so I might as well donate the time and energy!)

3) Possibly discuss getting the kin sister program restarted that we used to have in Eta Gamma (where each MC was given an alumni "kin sister", which was the alumni equivalent of a big sister mentor, to connect each active to an individual alumni for a stronger bond). This might be happening already, but I do want to ask... since all but one line of the sorority has died off, it might be nice to reconnect the "old" Eta Gamma back to the new in this fashion.

Anyway... since I'm getting obnoxiously wordy here... I do appreciate the response. Hopefully the recent contact I've received from them will help improve the alumni relations in our chapter.