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5/4/2018 » 5/6/2018
Alumni Weekend 2018

Reunion Planning Guide for Alumni Weekend
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Alumni Weekend—May 13-15, 2011

Class reunions at George School unite alumni and George School in a special relationship. For some classes, reunions provide alumni the opportunity to meet for the first time since graduation; for others, it is a chance to renew old friendships. Reunions are a time for you and your classmates to remember the past and celebrate the present.

Although your reunion is unique and will reflect the interest and availability of your class members, our experience has shown that the reunion planning process has a number of elements common to all classes.

The Role of the Reunion Committee

The reunion committee is responsible for the planning and implementation of the class reunion program. Working with the alumni director, the annual fund director, and the Advancement and Development Office, the reunion committee ensures that social activities, fundraising activities, and communications are designed and coordinated to produce a positive and memorable reunion experience for all members of the class.

The reunion committee has two major functions: activities planning and class gift fundraising. While most of the responsibilities are shared by the group, each function needs a designated leader or two to serve as primary contact people for the Advancement and Development staff.

The Role of the Advancement and Development Office

The Advancement and Development Office staff is ready to help and looks forward to working with you throughout the year. We will

• Provide a current class list with mailing and email addresses and telephone numbers.
• Add content to your reunion homepage on the Alumni Website and link it with your reunion page on Facebook, if you choose to develop one.
• Draft letters for you to personalize.
• Produce and mail letters (usually two or three) to your classmates.
• Provide guidance on finances.
• Prepare registration materials.
• Arrange for your class photograph.

Reunion Activities Planning

Much of our work together will focus on the social activities of your reunion. Make sure you enlist the help of several active members so that all responsibilities can be carried out in a shared, thorough, and timely manner.

Goals
• Celebrate this special occasion at GS with as many classmates as possible.
• Renew friendships and rekindle class spirit.
• Encourage classmates to contact each other about the reunion.
• Build enthusiasm for the reunion.

Planning Committee Members…
• Make logistical decisions.
• Plan Saturday night off-campus event.
• Personalize drafted letters.
• Determine activity/event fees.
• Coordinate and track attendance.
• Update the webpage, the Facebook page, and promote the use of the alumni website.

Logistical Decisions
• Establish a Friday night gathering place
• Determine Saturday lunch location: Will your class eat together in the dining room or outside for lunch on Saturday? (50th and 25th will be located in tents.)
• Will your class attend meeting for worship together on Sunday?
• Will your class go to brunch together in the dining room on Sunday?
• Are children going to be included in your activities?
• Overnight accommodations: George School will reserve blocks of rooms at local hotels, but individuals must make their own reservations and arrangements. You can choose to recommend a particular hotel for your class.

Saturday Night Event Planning Considerations
• Event type: Dinner or reception?
• Event location: Restaurant or catered?
• Menu: Work with the restaurant or caterer
• Costs: Include extras: gratuities, faculty guests, and rentals in your planning.
• Rain location: Will you need a Plan B if it rains? If so, how will you notify your classmates if you must change your plans?

Presenting your Class Gift

Reunion giving is the cornerstone of the George School Annual Fund. By participating in the reunion gift, class members make a special contribution to honor their George School experience and to acknowledge that their years at George School were made possible by the generosity of others who went before them.

Gifts to the Annual Fund provide the perfect opportunity to support the widest array of programs and student services. They support current expenditures such as salaries, financial aid, academics, arts and athletics programs. Utilized in the same year that they are given, Annual Fund gifts make an immediate impact on the students, faculty, and staff of George School.

Members of the class committee work with the Annual Fund director to develop a class giving plan and to solicit their classmates. You don’t need to be an expert in philanthropy or finance—some of the best callers are people who just enjoy talking with their classmates! All class committee members should make their own gifts or pledges early in the campaign so as to demonstrate their own commitment before calling on others.

Goals

• Maximize participation
• Reach or exceed your financial goal

How you can help
• Work with the Advancement and Development Office staff to determine a realistic goal and purpose based on class giving potential.
• Personalize class gift letters/emails as needed.
• Identify prospective leadership donors in the class.
• Contact classmates via phone, letter, email, Facebook or phonathons to encourage them to attend the reunion and contribute to the class gift.
• Appoint a class member who will make the gift presentation at the All-Alumni Gathering.

Take advantage of the Phonathon!

The best way to get classmates back for Alumni Weekend and to get them to make reunion gifts is by calling them on the telephone. We are happy to host evening reunion phonathons (6:30–9:30 p.m.) at George School in April. We will supply class lists and other important information about your reunion. Come early and enjoy dinner in the dining room with your classmates at 5:30 p.m. Anyone interested in helping with this is encouraged to participate.

Can’t make it to George School for a phonathon? Your team can make calls and send emails from home. We will send you the class lists and contact information.

For additional information or to sign up to help, please contact Emily Shaker, annual fund director, at 215.579.6581 or annualfund@georgeschool.org.

Good Communication and Planning are KEY!

Although there are still three mailings going out to reunion classes, many other communications also occur via email and online. Each reunion class has a page on the Alumni Website http://alumni.georgeschool.org that can be linked to their Facebook page. Members of the class are encouraged to provide updates for both the class homepage on the Alumni Website and Facebook page.

Encourage and track attendance and participation
• Activate your team to contact each class member.
• Keep a master list of which committee members are contacting which other classmates.
• Keep a record of classmate responses re: attendance and gift participation.
• Find classmates or contact information for classmates currently on the "lost” list.

Plan carefully, be realistic! Careful planning will guarantee that your class collects enough to cover all costs of your reunion activities. Keeping in mind that George School cannot cover any overruns, please make sure that your fees will cover all of your costs. (When there’s a little extra left over, most classes simply add these funds to their class gift.)

Keep George School in the loop … please!
Please pass along any new information you receive to us so we can update our files with accurate contact information. If you have any questions about your reunion planning process, feel free to call on Karen Suplee Hallowell, director of alumni relations. Contact her at 215.579.6620 or alumni@georgeschool.org.