Alumni are important because students need only blink before they too own the title of “alumnus.” Students spend their university years soaking up knowledge, but also beginning an investment in the university that will transcend their student years.
That investment should not be treated lightly. The value of your education is dependent on the level of effort you expend as a student. At the same time the success of the university is dependent on the efforts of students.
A university filled with nothing but students who believe “C’s get degrees” would not be a very good school, right? Contrast that with a place where every student is engaged in class, developing reasoned analytical arguments and challenging classmates to do the same.
This is true outside the classroom as well. Nearly every club, program and interesting activity on our campuses is the result of students pouring their energy into making it happen. After graduation it would be easy to be a “C alumnus,” but the best universities are the ones where alumni choose the A+ route.
At these universities alumni volunteer routinely, serve as career mentors, offer student internships, hire other alumni, advocate for their alma mater constantly and publicly, make charitable contributions to support scholarships and physical improvements and volunteer to support a multitude of other efforts.
Universities like Pacific exist only because people devote their time, energy and money to ensure their existence. We are lucky to have many A+ alumni who volunteer, give, encourage potential students to apply and find every way they can to ensure the health of their alma mater.
Alumni are important because they used to be students. Beyond that alumni are important because they never lose the ability to make a difference for their alma mater.
Martha Calus-McLain is the Senior Director of Alumni & Community Engagement.