Many alumni, like myself, have fond memories of days spent on the lake with friends, whether at tournaments, practice, or getting together during the summer months. After graduation, it often is difficult to keep in touch with the skiing world. It is awesome when teams have a way to keep alumni involved. It is both beneficial for alumni, but also for current team members.
Benefits of having “old balls” (as we call them in the Midwest) hanging around:
- Free coaching
- They usually have some money (donations, help with equipment, etc.)
- Free ideas
- Pass along traditions
Current teams stand to gain all of the above – for free! So, how do you, the current executive board, make it happen?
- Maintain an alumni contact list. Ask your graduating seniors for email addresses and phone numbers before they leave. Connect on Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, or whatever the kids these days are using.
- Keep alumni informed. Send emails, texts, or post about recent successes. Introduce your current team members to alumni. Informed alumni are more likely to remain involved, as they still feel like they know what is going on.
- Host an alumni tournament, or get a team to register for Alumni Regionals. If you have the means to host an alumni tournament for your school, that is a great way to get old team members to get to know current team members. You could even make this a fundraising event for new equipment or to cover tournament entry fees. If you do not have the ability or manpower to host your own tournament, reach out to your alumni network, and have them create a team for Alumni Regionals that take place each summer and have current team members come to cheer them on and make connections.
- Leverage your alumni network. Need some extra cash to buy new jump skis? Hoping to find a way to purchase a new trailer? Alumni are a great resource.
We might be old, but many of us do want to stay involved, and help out our Alma Maters. It gives us a sense of youth.