Alumni Engagement and Institutional Advancement
CUHK has been able to go from strength to strength thanks to its supportive alumni population and a strong culture of giving among all the members and friends of the University
Education and research are an investment in the future. Institutional advancement supports the University to achieve its goals. CUHK is grateful for the generous support of its alumni, individual and corporate donors, as well as charitable trusts and foundations, who share our vision in creating a better future through education and research for the people of Hong Kong, mainland China and the world. They motivate us to work even harder to achieve excellence with purpose and responsibility.
Our Alumni Community and the Task Ahead
At the start of the new century, CUHK was home to about 67,000 alumni. Today, the number of alumni has increased by nearly 360% to over 240,000.
In the five years from 2016 to 2020 alone, 55,084 students graduated from the University. Some 45% of our alumni graduated within the past 10 years. The CUHK alumni family, especially younger alumni, will continue to grow substantially over the next five years. It is also noteworthy that the number of postgraduate alumni is growing strongly. Our alumni holding only postgraduate degrees from the University now account for 39% of the entire alumni community.
How do we effectively engage this large and increasingly diverse community? This is the exciting task that lies ahead.
The 4 ‘Es’ of Alumni Engagement
In the next five years, alumni engagement will be proactive and aligned with the goals of the University. The changing demographics demand that more targeted programmes will have to be devised, rendering obsolete any one-size-fits-all approach to alumni engagement. The set of strategies proposed here can be summarized as the four Es—Expand, Enrich, Enhance and Enlarge. They reflect the University’s commitment to developing even stronger ties with its alumni.
Expand connections with alumni around the world, including local, mainland and overseas alumni communities, while strengthening ties with undergraduate and postgraduate alumni in diverse disciplines
Enrich and foster a sustained sense of belonging, recognition and pride among alumni through an array of engagement events, communication, alumni associations and networks
Enhance valuable and positive interactions between alumni and students while capitalizing on alumni’s talents, expertise, networks and resources to nurture students’ whole-person development and learning experience
Enlarge partnerships among different internal units to create greater synergy and stronger impact on alumni engagement
Advancement for a Shared Vision
While alumni and donor support has been unflagging, the challenges facing university advancement in the near to medium term are formidable. The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc around the world and the social unrest in Hong Kong has not been kind to the economy.
Both capital campaigns and targeted fundraising will play a role in the University’s new advancement drive. The needs of the University and donor interests will be carefully mapped out and matched. Priority areas will be identified. The articulation of the University’s vision will be sharpened, to connect better with existing and new donors. Stewardship of existing gifts will be strengthened.
The University will endeavour to expand its donor base. New prospective donors who share the vision and values of the University will be engaged, both within and outside Hong Kong. Mainland China, in particular, represents a potentially significant source of support for university advancement, especially given our sizeable alumni presence in virtually all parts of the country.
The University will also aim to cultivate a stronger culture of giving, which brings other rewards. For example, a student may be inspired to donate the cost of a cup of coffee to a charitable cause each week. Although the amount may not be large, the act of giving would help build ethical character and humane concern for others, the importance of which can hardly be measured in monetary terms.
The eagerly anticipated 60th anniversary of CUHK in 2023 will be a momentous occasion. The University will be taking the opportunity of celebrating this landmark moment to draw new interest and support for its future initiatives. Several signature developmental projects and campaigns that will help build interest and support among our students, staff, alumni, benefactors and friends are being planned. These projects will highlight the University’s accomplishments, current initiatives, and future goals, and more importantly inspire the wider community to join us in the journey to excellence with purpose and responsibility.