Alex Watters on Alumni Engagement

Alex Watters on Alumni Engagement

On this episode of The Big Plan on Campus, Thomas talks with Alex Watters, the Director of Alumni Engagement at Morningside University.

Alex shares his unique journey with the world of education, beginning with his dreams of being a pro-golfer. After an unfortunate accident, his plans changed. Alex received a degree in political science and global history from Morningside and saw himself instead going into politics. He went on to get his masters in negotiation and dispute resolution and had the opportunity to intern at the US Department of Education. Through his intern experience, he found himself wanting to be part of the Morningside campus environment, so he pursued a career there. He’s been working at Morningside now since 2013.

Thomas asks Alex about how universities can create effective alumni engagement. Alex says there’s a common phrase with engaging alumni: time, talent and treasure. Some universities will focus on one component, but he believes in taking a balanced approach. Alex goes on to give numerous examples of ways to engage alumni with their time and talent.

The two then discuss where some universities miss the mark on alumni engagement. Alex talks about how key it is to compare your program to others and regularly evaluate it to see what’s working and not working. Sometimes alumni programs get caught up in tradition, which can be a good thing but oftentimes can hold programs back from evolving. Aspects of a program may be broken, and need changed. Being open to change and intentional with your engagement is key to avoiding a stale program.

On this week’s episode for the financial planning educational opportunity, Thomas talks about an upcoming webinar that he is hosting with two of his team members at the end of March on recent market volatility. BerganKDV’s Chief Investment Officer, Derek Hoyt and Portfolio Analyst, David Peyton will be presenting “Keeping Market Volatility in Perspective” on March 30th at 2pm CST. Click here to register!

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