Archive | December, 2013

Sharing a Bit of “Home” for the Holidays

Seasons greetings, friends —

It’s been a few months since my last blog post. Instead of blogging I have been writing new pieces for CASE’s CURRENTS Magazine (see Nov/Dec issue and watch for March 2014 feature article) and am now contributing a monthly column about International Travel Management for Academic Impressions. Every since our Thanksgiving in the U.S., I have been thinking about my own holiday card: when would I write it? when do I send it? should I send it before December 25 or right after New Year’s?

I’ve decided to send my card in the New Year as a wise friend and colleague cautioned me last week to wait on emails until early January (“they will just get lost in everyone’s inbox”).

Have you sent your holiday card to your constituents? I’m sure many of you have signed a stack of holiday cards affixed with the interoffice routing slip or have approved the e-card or holiday newsletter that was sent to members of your on-line community.

What about your international alumni? Whether your institution spent time with alumni abroad in 2013 or if you are planning an international visit and/or event in 2014, a special edition holiday card is one way to bridge the distance and build stronger relationships with these valued former students.

When I was at Tufts every January we sent a Lunar New Year card to our contactable alumni, parents and friends in Asia. We featured several iconic images of the snowy campus and international students. Knowing how strongly images resonate with alumni abroad, holiday or New Year e-cards are one way of sharing a bit of alma mater, their former “home.”

There is still time to create international holiday cards. Draft up language and create a collage of campus images. Collaborate with other international advancement officers, admissions recruiters and the international student services area to send a collective wish from your campus. Little gestures like this will be remembered and appreciated.