Guidance for Alumni Chapters

General Guidance

Formal relationship with the University

Alumni chapters are important bodies that will help the work of the University of Bedfordshire enormously; however, they must understand the relationship they enter into with the University of Bedfordshire once they are officially recognised.

  • The University has no responsibility for the financing of alumni
  • The University relies upon alumni chapters to act in its best interests and at all times to be mindful of the reputation and standing of the
  • The University has the discretion, at all times, to remove an officer, or officers, from an alumni chapter should he or she act in a way that could be construed as being harmful to the reputation of the

Chapters can choose to select officers to fulfil a variety of roles. Officers can be appointed at the annual general meeting of the chapter, or, if the chapter is a more informal arrangement, as and when deemed appropriate. These might include one or more of the following:

  • Chair / President / Group Leader – responsible for ensuring all activities are delivered in line with the chapter and the University’s mission. Chairs meetings and helps manage the general workload of the chapter and its officers. Every Chapter should have this role as a minimum.
  • Secretary – maintains a membership list and is responsible for coordinating and calling meetings. Keeps records of all proceedings and reports to the Alumni Relations Manager.
  • Treasurer – maintains the chapter’s bank account. Collects and records any subscriptions or fees and submits annual accounts to the Alumni Relations Manager.
  • Honorary President – acts as an ambassador for the group. The role could be held by a prominent alumnus or alumna. Speaks at key events.
  • Events Officer – takes a lead with event organisation, organises venues, speakers and refreshments.
  • Membership Officer – maintains a list of all members and encourages others to join the group and to become active.
  • Recent Graduate Officer – acts as the main point of contact for recently graduated alumni and helps organise events and activities aimed at this group.

Membership Criteria

The University of Bedfordshire seeks to be as inclusive as possible and to welcome not only alumni but their friends, family and colleagues to participate in activities and events. Alumni chapters are encouraged to do the same. When deciding their membership criteria, chapters may want to include:

  • Partners and family of Bedfordshire alumni
  • Staff and former staff of the University of Bedfordshire
  • Parents of current Bedfordshire students
  • Visiting academics

Insurance

Alumni chapters will be expected to ensure that appropriate insurance is in place to cover public liability for any events and activities they run. Most public venues will have their own insurance policy in place which will cover your events.

Risk Assessment

Alumni chapters will need to ensure they minimise any risks for participants when they organise an event. In practical terms this means liaising with any venues that you hire to ensure they have been risk assessed and have appropriate insurance cover. If you need to do a risk assessment yourself, the Alumni Relations Manager can provide you with a basic risk assessment template for this purpose and you can obtain advice about how to undertake risk assessments from www.hse.gov.uk/risk

Chapter Finances

Alumni chapters are self-financing. It is up to each group to decide how they finance their activities. You may choose to charge an annual membership fee or charge for tickets for events. We recommend that you work on a break even basis while also trying to build a small reserve fund. You may need to open a bank account to keep appropriate financial records. You are required to submit an annual statement of expenditure to the Alumni Relations Manager each year, as we are required to ensure that your expenditure complies with your responsibilities as an alumni chapter.

Recruiting new Members and Volunteers

Without willing volunteers the chapter cannot operate successfully. It is therefore important that you think about how you will recruit volunteers. You will no doubt have an immediate cohort that you can turn to, including your Year Group.

You will find it easier to recruit if you have a communications plan, including a presence on social media (e.g. Facebook, LinkedIn).

The Alumni Relations Manager can help you to recruit members and volunteers for the chapter. Get in touch with us if you want help to develop a recruitment and communications plan at alumni@beds.ac.uk

Code of Conduct

Committee members must act honestly, in good faith and in the best interests of the chapter, committee and University as a whole. They will have a duty to exercise care and diligence in fulfilling their roles, and in exercising any powers attached to that position. They must not use the position for personal gain or allow any personal or business interests to conflict with the interest of the University or its alumni programme. They must not seek to represent the interests of the University in any public forum or make public comment on policy matters concerning the University without prior express consent.

Guidelines for Using the University of Bedfordshire Brand

The logo must always be reproduced in its entirety and must not be distorted or edited in any way.

A guide to the University's visual identity for the logo and use on printed materials can requested from alumni@beds.ac.uk

Please note, before distributing any new materials containing the University logo, please send a copy to alumni@beds.ac.uk for approval.