Why You Should Get Involved in Your College Alumni Association

by Tobin Perry

Most students only give passing thoughts to joining their college alumni association while they’re still in school. They may consider it something they’ll do once they graduate and “officially” become alumni—not while they’re cramming for tests and enjoying college life.

But you don’t need to wait until you don a cap and gown to begin networking with your school’s alumni. In fact, you can do it right now while you’re still a student.

Why Students Should Get Involved Now

There are many benefits associated with tapping into your college alumni association. Here are a few you can enjoy right away (and well into the future):

Networking with leaders in your field. Your school’s alumni can be great sources for summer jobs, internships, and even your first job out of college. Alumni from your school represent people who are 5, 10, and even 50 years ahead of you in your career field. In addition to job leads, alumni can also offer valuable career advice.

Joining a global family. When you enroll in college, you become part of a family with shared experiences and values. Participating in activities with alumni gives you access to people all over the world (not just on campus) who can become sources of support as you pursue your professional and personal goals.

Taking advantage of perks. Most alumni associations provide benefits like discounts on hotels, sporting events, banking services, and even insurance! Depending on the university and the perk, you may be able to get these advantages while you’re still in school.

A Look at Azusa Pacific University’s Alumni Association

Azusa Pacific University’s Alumni Association is different from most. Most schools charge their alumni a fee to join the association, and their alumni benefits depend on whether they join. APU doesn’t charge a membership fee or subject alumni to any restrictive conditions.

When you graduate from APU, you’re automatically inducted into the university’s alumni family. In fact, once you’ve completed just 24 credit hours and maintained good standing with the offices of Student Financial Services and Residence Life, you’re considered an APU alum! A simple purchase of a $5 Alumni ID card provides you with access to a number of alumni benefits(including corporate discounts and access to helpful career resources).

Connecting with APU Alumni

APU offers a variety of opportunities for you to connect with alumni while you’re still a student. For example, the school is working to expand awareness of the alumni association and develop opportunities for current students to connect with alumni soon after arriving on campus.

“We want to instill a sense in the students of having an opportunity to give back,” said Rachel Johnson, the director of alumni engagement at APU. “What we’re really looking for is for them to give back their time, talent, and treasure . . . And we want them to think in broader strokes beyond their current experience. How can I, as a member of this institution’s community, add value when my physical presence is no longer a part of the campus?”

Here are some of the ways you can get involved as a student at APU:

Check out the Office of Alumni Engagement online. Learn more about the APU Alumni Association and its various benefits.

Participate in alumni events. Keep an eye out for alumni events that are open to current students. Not all events will be valuable for current students, but many are!

Visit APUConnect. APUConnect provides instant access to an online community of APU alumni. It’s a great way to get the latest news, up-to-date personal/professional information, and opportunities for internships, mentorships, speaking engagements, and job searches and posts.

Connect with the Office of Alumni Engagement on social media. Be sure to connect with APU’s Office of Alumni Engagement on Facebook and Twitter, and join the Azusa Pacific University Alumni Association on LinkedIn. By following these social media accounts, you’ll be among the first to hear about alumni events!

Looking to join the APU community and become part of the legacy of alumni? Learn more about what the university has to offer and apply today.