All athletes go through a journey. During the last phase of the collegiate part of that journey, the student-athlete goes through a vital transition. While this hand-off is daunting on the athlete (psychologically and physically), it’s also tough to manage internally by the athletics department stakeholders.
Athletics development offices and fundraising teams are challenged to engage recent college graduates. Perhaps even more challenging is maintaining a relationship with that graduate as they venture into life after graduation. Today, that relationship is done primarily through homecoming and outreach for fundraising.
But how can athletics departments foster deeper relationships with their most valuable asset—their alumni?
And more importantly, how can it be done efficiently and without adding more “clutter” to the stakeholder’s toolkit?
Many college athletics departments and their athlete/player development staff struggle to enhance the athlete experience on and off the field—but if they get it right, they know all too well that this experience can drive not only recruiting, but also better athlete engagement.
As Drake said, “two birds one stone, my aim is amazin’.”
Virtual Mentorship & Alumni Engagement
In September of 2017, Game Plan launched Virtual Mentorship features inside our platform. Since then, college athletics departments have connected current athletes with alumni athletes.
The results have been outstanding.
The athlete benefits through the relationship with an individual who successfully navigated their journey and now wants to help them do the very same thing. That relationship is irreplaceable.
Alumni are eager to stay engaged and give back—not just monetarily—but through advice, and often, through career opportunities. Beyond opportunities offered by mentors, Game Plan’s Career Marketplace allows additional interested employers to promote their career opportunities to athletes and alumni of the athletics department. This engagement with the alumni creates an invaluable bond to the athletics department and the university.
In addition, coaches reap the rewards of an enhanced athlete experience that directly improves their ability to recruit.
As a bonus, the entire athletics department, their student-athlete development staff and their alumni engagement staff eliminate “platform fatigue” and experience efficiency like never before, without allocating disproportionate resources.
Interested in learning more?
We would love to share with you our experiences in working with over 70 athletics organizations across the NCAA, professional athletics and national governing bodies.
“Having Game Plan help to set up these programs from beginning to end has saved so much time on my part. Having [engagement reporting tools] is awesome, as well as having a platform to share with our alums for the mentoring program.”
Associate AD, Student-Athlete Development at UMass Athletics