Building a Team
The first task of the Reunion Chair is to recruit your classmates to form a Reunion Planning Committee and think about potential committee chairs. Committees should begin to form well before Reunion, typically six to nine months in advance. Recruiting volunteers can be time-consuming, but the process is well worth the effort.
Coordinating a strong team is your main priority. It is important to bring a wide variety of classmates into the committees to ensure that your Reunion reflects the diverse identities, interests and talents of your class. Specific responsibilities of committee chairs are described here. Talk with your classmates, share the committee descriptions, identify the best candidates for each position and start recruiting early.
It is important to plan a class conference call or virtual meeting in November or December. These meetings have historically taken place around Homecoming. During this call/meeting, you will want to discuss how to recruit additional volunteers as needed, review the budget, set class fees and begin inviting speakers and coordinating programs. Work with your liaison in Alumni and Parent Programs to help set up this call/meeting.
Getting the Word Out: Communication Options
Working with the Attendance Committee and your Web Editor/Social Media Chair, you will want to promote Reunion in regular correspondence on your class website, class Listserv and on social media pages (if your class uses them). While publicity alone cannot guarantee good attendance, it will certainly make a big difference.
You will work with your class liaison in Alumni and Parent Programs to prepare and send class and committee correspondence. We will format and send letters to your classmates via email or postal mail. Stationery and webpages listing the Reunion Chair and committee members will also be prepared by our office. All Reunion communications will also be reviewed by the Director of Advancement Communications and must follow the College’s Visual Identity Toolkit; should we need to make edits to your communications, we will share those edits with you before sending your letter or email. Please see the suggested communications timeline.
Class Assistants are current Amherst students who play an important role in the implementation of Reunion. The Reunion Chair often works with the Headquarters Committee to support your Class Assistants. All Class Assistants have attended the alcohol safety training course (TIPS) provided by the College. Class Assistants are responsible for setting up your tables and chairs at headquarters on Thursday (or earlier if your class festivities require) and taking them down and stacking them on Sunday. They also will work throughout the weekend, helping with errands and miscellaneous jobs around headquarters as well as tending bar. The College may also hire professional bartenders who are TIPS-certified to manage needs on Friday and Saturday nights. Please see the Headquarters Committee page for more information.
Headquarters and On-Campus Housing
The Reunion Chair will be asked to provide a list of classmates who should be housed at headquarters, space permitting. This list will be due March 15 and often includes the Reunion Committee members who are staying on campus. Alumni staying at headquarters still need to register and pay for housing. The on-campus housing fee is waived for Reunion Chairs and their families. Registration is still necessary, and Reunion Chairs are encouraged to register by phone to avoid paying the on-campus housing fee.