Alumni Network Leaders

Alumni Network Leaders anchor up outside the Seidman College of Business

Welcome, Network Leaders!

This is your hub for the information and resources you need to be an effective group leader. Whether you want to request assistance from the Alumni Relations team, host an event, or find general guidance for running your group, this is the place to start.

Network Leader Qualifications

Network leaders oversee effective network operations. They steer the direction and implementation of programs, events, and communications, and foster a welcoming and beneficial network environment. Network leaders are committed to:

  • Being a graduate of Grand Valley State University
  • Devoting the necessary time to provide effective volunteer leadership for work your network (you can expect at least 2 hours per month)
  • Submitting an annual report outlining network activities and reaffirming continued interest in service
  • A 3-year-term of service to your network
  • Planning and hosting a minimum of 2 annual engagement projects/events per year

Network Leader Best Practices


  • Network leaders place emphasis on the recruitment, retention, and recognition of members
  • Be familiar with Alumni Relations resources in order to effectively utilize them
  • Plan ahead! Prepare for success:
    • Maintain a regular schedule of network leader meetings
    • Establish a program calendar/program cadence
  • Show enthusiasm for and support of GVSU, as well as a desire to further the interests and visibility of GVSU in the community, among the affinity base, and or regionally


  • Participate in GVSU alumni network leadership training/events and meetings (generally twice annually)
  • Create a succession plan to facilitate the continuation of a successful and effective Alumni Network
  • Create a network-specific purpose statement outlining the goals and/or focus of the group
  • Maintain active and prompt communication with your identified Alumni Relations liaison


  • Request any necessary funding to help offset the cost of network activities according to the Alumni Relations Grant process


  • Comply with GVSU Identity Standards and utilize GVSU’s resources (network logo, marketing, print collateral, program staff support) in planning
  • Maintain active communication with network participants through email inquiries, and social media channels (LinkedIn and Facebook). Manage social media accounts in accordance with GVSU Social Media Guidelines


Designate Leadership Responsibilities

  • Networks leaders should determine a model in which they will operate under. Tasks should be clearly distributed amongst network leaders
  • Example: Identify one leader to spearhead communications efforts and one to lead events and programming


Serves as the group liaison with Alumni Relations and as the point of contact with the larger alumni community. Communicates with alumni to increase awareness and maintain good public relations for the Network and Alumni Relations:

  • Name listed on website for alumni outreach
  • Outreach and/or maintain communication with alumni expressing interest in network participation or leadership
  • Work with Network leadership and Alumni Relations staff to promote events and encourage alumni participation using email, network website, and social media

Leads Network events and program efforts. Collaborates with Communications Lead and Alumni Relations staff to:

  • Encourage creation of forward-looking activities calendar. Completion of Grant Proposals within the outlined timeframe
  • Identify annual activities in which your group will focus on year after year. These could be events held in conjunction with campus events calendar and/or annual events that align with your network focus (Examples: Homecoming participation, move-in, summer send off, commencement, PRIDE, local parades, etc.)
  • Oversee event logistics: Establish budget, secure venues, oversee event programming and content, lead onsite registration and check-in, and manage event execution — including set-up and teardown
  • Manages the submission of the Alumni Engagement Grant application and post program grant materials including the collection and submission of budget/receipts
  • Work with Alumni Relations staff for registration support when necessary
  • Support events that are organized and/or sponsored by the University or Alumni Relations in your community
Seidman alums talking together at an event.
Alums standing with President Mantella.

How GVSU Alumni Relations Will Support You


  • Designate a representative to assist in the support and management of your group 
  • Provide regular network leader trainings
    • Alumni Volunteer Leadership Summit (in-person)
    • Network Leadership meeting (virtual)
  • Maintain online resources for network leaders


  • GVSU Alumni Relations created the Alumni Engagement Grant as a mechanism to support alumni networks in their effort to engage and connect with GVSU alumni
  • Alumni Relations will award funds four times per year to support engagement events and projects organized by alumni volunteers
  • Alumni Relations will help support one or more special projects undertaken by each official Alumni Network who submits a grant


  • Distribute targeted emails to network-aligned alumni
  • Provide promotional support via Alumni Relations communications channels and publications
  • Host and manage a network webpage
  • Co-create a Facebook page and LinkedIn group for your network
  • Co-create network branding
  • Share demographic data about alumni in your area
  • Provide graphic design support
  • Establish and share a Communications Guide


  • Provide online event registration forms and marketing support
  • Supply RSVP lists, name tags, check-in sheets
  • Furnish event support materials (i.e. branded table blanket/banner, reusable event centerpieces, alumni promotional products, etc.)
  • Establish and share an Event and Program Guide

GVSU reserves the sole and exclusive right to dissolve any network whose activities do not align with the University's mission, guidelines or policies.

Page last modified March 25, 2024