If you're like most Lehigh students and virtually all alums, your career is a pillar of purpose. With that in mind, we’ve been asking what Lehigh alumni want and putting those requests into action.
We started with a survey that some of you are familiar with. The survey, among other things, asked for your needs as related to our support here at the alumni office. The top three items reported by alums were all related to career—networking opportunities, job postings, and career counseling and advising.
No time was wasted in enhancing our alumni career development opportunities and reorganizing our operation to align with the needs expressed in the survey responses. This led to the creation of three new positions and staffing them with real talent and experience. The three new positions include a Director of Alumni Career Development, an Assistant Director of Alumni Career Development, and a Director of Alumni Career Counseling. Their responsibilities include overall program strategies, career-focused event planning (workshops, networking receptions, and seminars), and one-on-one career counseling, advising, and coaching.
We’ve found that although we had initially been targeting our programs for graduates from the 1990s, it’s been alumni of all ages (especially grads in the 1970s and 1980s) who have taken advantage of these powerful new services. All of our career-related events are well attended—to the point of overflow and waiting lists—and all indications point to a successful future for our new Alumni Career Solutions program.
Rounding out the top four most requested areas: Alumni have asked to be more involved with the recruitment of new students to Lehigh and, specifically, in the admissions process. Our Alumni Admissions Outreach (AAO) program, which had been started in the mid-‘80s, had lost momentum. So we’ve restructured the program, hired a fulltime staff member to run the program, provided our AAO volunteers with valuable training, and the result is a refreshed team of 628 volunteers who are better prepared to tell the world about Lehigh University. We now have hundreds of alumni “in the trenches” and on the front lines of recruiting the best and brightest young men and women to be the next generation of Lehigh students.
Along with strengthening the quality and quantity of applicants to Lehigh, the AAO program is yielding outstanding benefits by “casting a net” over a much greater population of prospective students in diverse geographic regions. Not only is the program identifying students who meet Lehigh’s higher admissions standards; at the same time, it is providing the secondary benefit of increasing alumni loyalty through participation in a meaningful program.
Yes folks, we’ve been listening to you. We will continue to take your feedback and suggestions with great interest and apply them where appropriate. Your voice is not only heard, but is an important ingredient in shaping the forward vision and action of your alma mater.
For more information on the Alumni Career Solutionsprogram, please contact Marcene Trump at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the Alumni Admissions Outreach(AAO) program, please contact Colleen Griggs-Roper ’99 at email@example.com.
Warm regards from snowy Bethlehem, PA!
Chris Marshall ‘88