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Stanford Alumni Association restructures field programming

STANFORD -- The Stanford Alumni Association has announced that it is dramatically restructuring its field programming, beginning this summer, in an effort to keep up with the changing lifestyles and needs of alumni.

President Bill Stone of the association said the Alumni Association's Board of Directors has decided to replace the Clubs Network with a regional outreach program designed to serve and engage greater numbers of alumni.

Over the past two years, the association has been reassessing the effectiveness of its programs as part of an overall strategic planning process. This study included an alumni survey in the fall of 1992, numerous focus groups and an in-depth evaluation of resource allocation and program effectiveness.

Through this process, Stone said, some rather troublesome facts surfaced: overall club membership has held steady or dropped for the past few years, and attendance numbers are decreasing at events despite the Alumni Association's increased financial support. of the clubs.

"It became clear that we had to make some major changes," Stone said. "We were concerned that we were reaching only 10 to 12 percent of our alumni through this set of activities. We felt that we owed it to our alumni to serve more of them better."

The new program focuses staffing and financial resources on the 23 areas of the United States where a collective 80 percent of the alumni population resides.

"Most regions have current alumni clubs," Stone said. "We'd like to help those groups build on their existing organizations by providing more staffing and exporting more programs from campus.

"We envision creating a more unified Stanford presence in these areas by better coordination with other university offices that promote activities in the field and by providing an opportunity for volunteers - who represent a broad range of Stanford backgrounds - to work together on the university's behalf," Stone said.

Clubs will be replaced by associations and chapters. Associations will be located in the Bay Area (with regional activities in the East Bay, San Jose, San Francisco and the Peninsula), New York, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Sacramento, Portland, Seattle, Denver, Chicago, Boston and Washington, D.C. Chapters will be located in Santa Barbara, Monterey, Hawaii, Phoenix, Dallas, Houston, Minneapolis, Detroit, Atlanta, Miami and Philadelphia.

These groups will be governed by volunteer councils. Regional representatives also will have the opportunity to provide a Stanford "presence" in areas where the alumni population is not concentrated enough to sustain an association or chapter.

Stone said the new outreach program will be phased in over the next two years.

"As the Alumni Association begins its second century," he said, "we are excited about the opportunities that this new initiative presents to reach out to greater numbers of the Stanford family."



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