In December, members of the Alumni Advisory Panel 2021-2023 were invited to consult on the draft Alumni Engagement Strategy 2022-2025 to inform developments and the delivery of alumni activities. As part of their participation, panel members were asked to share their thoughts and suggestions on further ways alumni could be invited to engage with the CSC.

The new Alumni Engagement Strategy will be implemented from April 2022 and will draw on successes of the previous strategy, alongside the introduction of new activities and updates to ongoing areas of delivery.

All 98 panel members were invited to consult on this activity and 51 shared their feedback, a response rate of 52%.

Assessing engagement

Before providing feedback on the draft strategy, panel members were asked a series of short questions designed to assess their level of awareness and engagement in existing alumni activities. Most respondents self-assessed a good understanding of current alumni engagement activities and feeling moderately engaged by these offerings.

Following the initial self-assessment, respondents completed a range of questions on topic areas including strategy objectives and activities, recommendations for further development, and event delivery and engagement.

Key insights

Participating panel members provided an in-depth analysis of the draft Alumni Engagement Strategy 2022-2025, sharing their thoughts on activities identified for continuation, as well as new activities, and assessed their value to alumni. Panel members also provided feedback on communication with alumni, event programming, and refreshing engagement in countries with low alumni numbers.

Below you can read some of the key insights:

  • Activities which encouraged collaboration and networking between alumni received the highest number of comments and recommendations for future development and delivery
  • It was reported that more regular and direct email communications were needed to increase awareness of alumni engagement opportunities
  • Scholar/alumni centred activities were rated as offering greater value to alumni, as well as those which required commitment and a level of personal responsibility to take part
  • Panel members reported that personal and professional development resources and opportunities would help build a CSC identity amongst alumni
  • Feedback indicated that a hybrid event programme would be well received, with in-person events returning to pre-COVID levels at least
  • It was recommended that activities with limited participation due to eligibility should be reviewed and ways to expand these activities identified
  • Opportunities and platforms for alumni created content should be explored to support CSC publications
  • Implementation strategies for countries with smaller alumni numbers and/or lower engagement levels should be developed

A full report on the responses gathered has been produced and will be used to finalise the Alumni Engagement Strategy 2022-2025 and its implementation. Members of the Alumni Advisory Panel and wider Commonwealth Alumni may be called on to provide further feedback and insights.

Thank you to all panel members who took part in this consultation.

About the CSC’s Alumni Advisory Panel

The CSC’s Alumni Advisory Panel provides a platform for Commonwealth Alumni to support the future of the programme and its Scholars by sharing personal insight and expertise to contribute to the development of CSC activities. Panel members are appointed for a two-year term and represent the multitude of knowledge and expertise within the CSC alumni community, with members selected from across the Commonwealth and CSC Scholarship and Fellowship schemes.

You can find out more about the panel on the CSC website.