University of Denver graduates, past, present and future, have an inalienable connection to the University and to each other. To maintain that connection, the University has recommissioned an Alumni Council dedicated to serving the DU alumni population and fostering a lifelong relationship between alumni and their alma mater.
For current alumni, that means increased contact at the regional level. In 2018, DU created regional alumni networks in its five largest markets: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C. University staff, embedded in each region, facilitate networking events, professional development and volunteer activities, not just for alums, but also for incoming students and their families. Council members living in each region help DU understand the changing dynamics and realities in their region. They also help make connections between local alumni and incoming students.
“Part of what the Alumni Council is aspiring to do is ensure that our students have pathways and connections wherever they want to go and wherever they want to be,” says Brandon Buzbee, associate vice chancellor for global networks.
“The Alumni Council goes from galvanizing their networks and their communities to bring expertise to the students to benefit from the collective kind of wisdom, insight and relationships that the alumni community can bring. They are volunteer leaders helping drive this kind of engagement, [and] they’re going to provide some really great insight and connection for our student community,” he says.
The recently completed 23,000-square-foot Burwell Center for Career Achievement is designed to bring present and future alumni together. It offers space for career fairs and networking opportunities, rooms for employee interviews for students, and a place for alumni to meet before games at the Ritchie Center or special on-campus events.
“We want students … to see that alumni are the lifeblood of the institution,” Buzbee says. “That they are the living, breathing extension of DU, everywhere.”