Veteran’s Day is a great opportunity to pay special tribute to your school’s alumni who went on to serve in the United States armed forces. While it might be too late to establish a strong veteran alumni network for this year’s Veteran’s Day, there’s no better time than now to lay the groundwork for a strong veteran alumni network moving forward.
Here are a few tips to help you get better connected to veteran alumni.
- Establish a directory: The first basic step to getting better connected with veteran alumni is to establish and maintain a directory of your alumni and what they go on to do after high school. You should make it a point to include information about alumni who go on to serve, and in which branch they do so. Then you can easily sort through your directory by military service and determine which alumni are veterans.
- Hold Veteran’s Day events: Every year, make it a point to invite all veteran alumni to a Veteran’s Day event at the school or somewhere in the community. This event can take on just about any form you want, from a school assembly to a large banquet to a simple gathering at a hall with drinks and snacks. Whatever format you choose, make sure to honor your veterans and make it a patriotic, celebratory affair to give them the thanks and respect they deserve.
- Get veterans plugged in to other events: There are lots of ways to get veteran alumni connected with your school or alumni organization other than by holding a once-a-year Veteran’s Day event. You could have them on hand for the national anthem at sporting events, or honor them at various other games and events. You could ask them to come in and speak to classes about their experiences to provide some firsthand education about the military experience. Find creative ways to welcome them into your schools and get them plugged in.
- Maintain lines of communication: This is a good tip for connecting and maintaining any kind of alumni network, but it’s worth mentioning here for veterans. You can’t expect your veteran alumni to stay plugged in to your school and your alumni organization if you don’t maintain consistent lines of communication. Only reaching out to them at Veteran’s Day, for example, isn’t going to indicate a sincere interest in keeping them connected. Be willing to put the effort into maintaining the relationship all year round.
For more tips about connecting with your veteran alumni, contact us at Alumni Nations today.