Alumni Engagement

Alumni Engagement

What We Do 

We work closely with the CLA Alumni Society Board and the School of Journalism and Mass Communication Alumni Society to communicate with and engage CLA’s nearly 150,000 alumni through ongoing communications and activities—both in the Twin Cities and locations across the country.

Alumni Activities

We collaborate with the U of M Alumni Association, both alumni societies, CLA Student Board, CLA Career Services, CLA Undergraduate Education, and sometimes other collegiate alumni organizations to create activities for alumni to socialize, network, and connect with each other, our current students, and the College. We invite alumni to these activities through our alumni enewsletter, social media, and mass email. 

Alma Matters

Alma Matters is an enewsletter that is sent most months to all CLA undergraduate and graduate alumni. Its purpose is to keep alumni connected to the College by letting them know about events, opportunities, and collegiate news.

Alumni Awards

We coordinate two collegiate alumni awards. Nominations are due each year the Tuesday immediately after Martin Luther King, Jr. Day in January and the annual recognition event honoring recipients of these awards takes place in June. Learn more about past honorees and how to submit nominations at (link to revised web-page)

Alumni of Notable Achievement (ANA) honors alumni who have graduated 11 or more years ago. All ANA honorees have been nominated by CLA alumni, faculty, and staff. More than one person can be honored each year.

The Emerging Alumni Award—just launched in 2016—honors alumni who have graduated within the past 10 years. Honorees can be nominated by anyone and are selected each year members of the CLA Alumni Society Board and CLA Student Board.

Alumni Societies

The College has two alumni societies, the CLA Alumni Society, which is open to all CLA alumni, and the School of Journalism & Mass Communication Alumni Society, which was organized for graduates of SJMC. These groups mobilize numerous activities each year to engage our broad alumni audience.
  • Social Functions: Our alumni societies collaborate to engage alumni during the U’s Homecoming week; at a fall alumni social & volunteer recognition gathering; for an annual winter alumni and family event; and via various University-wide alumni networking functions year-round.

  • Educational Events: The CLA Alumni Society provides volunteer support to CLA’s annual A Brighter U “mini-college” style event featuring dialogue sessions led by CLA faculty.Both the CLA and SJMC Alumni Societies help the U of M Alumni Association promote numerous webinars and live events across Minnesota and the United states featuring CLA and University expertise.

  • Volunteer Activities: Both alumni societies collaborate with CLA Career Services and affiliated student groups to plan numerous on-campus alumni-student networking events and with the U of M Alumni Association on virtual networking events open to all CLA alumni and students. Additionally, the SJMC Alumni Society runs a mentoring program for SJMC students. 

Why It Matters

By engaging our alumni in a variety of social, educational, and volunteer capacities, we strengthen their connections to their departments, the college, and the University. 

We hope they will value that relationship and, in turn, spread the word about their appreciation for their liberal arts education; advocate for CLA among state lawmakers; volunteer their time; recommend CLA to prospective students; and/or become philanthropic toward CLA.


Erica Giorgi
Director of Alumni Relations

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