2.2.1 Purpose of an alumni association.
Developing active alumni begins prior to graduation (Johnson&Eckel,1997).
Alumni are one of the most important assets to any institution. They the
backbone to the success of the prevalent representation of the institution in the
real world. According to Arceo, alumni serve as a bridge between the institution
and their graduates. Strong relationships between the alma mater and alumni positively
impact alumni involvement and alumni contributions (Petit,197;
Duronio&Loesin,190). Many alumni networks were initially started from
regional groups of alumni brought together for university fundraising
activities. Later, these networks slowly gained added importance in the
development of the universities because of their enormous outreach potential
that benefits the university and helps current students in their career paths.
Alumni are the core group of constituents and largest source of voluntary support.
“In 1994, alumni contributed
more than 58 percent of the total support for higher education, while non-alumni
contributed 23 percent. Alumni have given
more philanthropic support than non-alumni every year since 1980, except in 1984
According to Moser, alumni were responsible for fully one quarter
of all private voluntary support of higher education (1993). And in a study on the
voluntary support of education, the Council for Aid to Education reported that the
majority of financial contributions came from alumni (Morgan,1995). The alumni
groups have been in existence for decades and they are constantly changing with
time. In the present landscape of technological and social change, important
transformations are underway in terms of how we live and work. We refer to
contemporary times as the “information age” or “knowledge based society”,
characterised by the diffusion of information and communications technologies
(ICT’s) and the increasing demand for new educational approaches and pedagogies
that foster lifelong learning (Fischer & Konomi, 2005). There have been
very big changes in the recent years with the development of the internet and
social networking that forces the alumni system to undergo huge changes. Emerging
technologies such as social networking software enable new and unique
opportunities for the mentoring and retention of information technology
graduates. Therefore, it is really important for institutions to focus on the
alumni networks and find ways to enhance their growth and development. The activity of a
social network can be described as the act of sharing business or social
relationships with the purpose of exploring the needs, interests or common
goals. Relationship networks have been facilitated by the development of
technology in a way that people can interact with each other, sharing ideas,
discussing their personal or professional lives, without the need of traveling.
According to Chia et al. (2012),
data from alumni networks can be used to enhance mentoring programs, to develop
online networking and above all, they could be key components of maintaining
students and strengthening university programs. The authors clarify that
initially, alumni networks emerged as regional groups to raise funds, however,
they gained importance for their potential to promote the name of the
university, which benefits the career of all the alumni as well as current
there are myriad number of reasons why there is the need for alumni groups or
associations in our society. As stated above earlier by Barnard, alumni are one
of the most important resources to colleges, universities, senior high schools or
institutions in general. They are a source of continual involvement by returning
to campus and participating in events. They are a vital source of financial supporting
especially when higher education expenses are costly due to economic and
political factors we sometimes face in the country. Due the established relevance
of alumni association, there is a need to develop a software that will easily
facilitate, maintain and manage alumni groups and their resources to be able to
attain the maximum benefit we can derive from the alumni for the institutions’
about the role of this type of professional, Brant
and Regan (2002) state that they are in the connections business and through
these connections they promote the advancement of the institution, but it is
often difficult to measure the impact of the work, requiring additional effort
to asses and quantify the points of contact with the alumni.
The framework is fit for changing over the gathered
information from the normal client and machine communications in to the viable
data which later on is utilized by the leaders to settle on productive choices.
the management information system, the most important entity is system itself
which is set of defined and interrelated components which are generally
described as all of the direct or indirect complex components or elements that
are related in a casual network. Within any particular time period, all of
these complex components are related in more or less stable way with at least
some other components (Thierauf 1984). So a very much created and intuitive framework is one which
gives best and valuable data to the directors at all levels.
What is a system?
The system is capable of converting the
collected data from the routine user and machine interactions in to the
effective information which later on is used by the decision makers to make
efficient decisions. In the management information system, the most important
entity is system itself which is set of defined and interrelated components
which are generally described as all of the direct or indirect complex
components or elements that are related in a casual network. Within any particular
time period, all of these complex components are related in more or less stable
way with at least some other components (Thierauf 1984). So a well developed
and interactive system is one which provides best and useful information to the
managers at all levels.
2.2.2 What is an Alumni system?
Alumni systems are web-based information systems which are
made by an academic institution to keep up relations with its students after
they graduate. Institutions utilize the system to gather graduate information
and sort out outreach exercises. These systems gather data about the present
area, work environment, work data and even side interests of the graduated
class. Below are some core concepts of an alumni system.
about the University
membership in the site
money for the university
2.2.3 Traditional Alumni Systems
Prior to the internet revolution, institutions had limited
ways to engage their former students. Communications were through postal mail,
letters or magazines and since the alumni are likely to be geographically
scattered in search of their own careers, the institutions ‘efforts to reach
alumni was affected by publication and mailing costs. Most communication were informative
in nature and not interactive. Alumni interest and participation in university
news or its affairs was usually higher in individuals who were stationed within
a geographic proximity to the university, or in people who se family or friends
still study at the university.
Following the internet revolution, though official alumni
systems were put in place, most of them were an add-on to university websites
and not a lot of alumni would get involved with it. These early alumni systems
suffered from sever al drawbacks. The focus of early alumni systems was mostly
for collecting university funds and due it its rudimentary structure offered
little to no channels for interactive communication. In addition, the number of
alumni actually participating or retaining university relations was only a
fraction of the total alumni population due to limited access or technological
means to use alumni systems.