37.030: Alumni Records




June 27, 2019

Initiated by:

Joe Pauwels, Assistant Vice President, Advancement Services
University Advancement

Endorsed by:

Nico Karagosian
Vice President, University Advancement

Approved by:

M. Duane Nellis

Signatures and dates on archival copy
  1. Purpose

    The purpose of this policy is to ensure that consistent, accurate information about alumni is readily available to all appropriate constituencies within the University in a timely fashion. Our alumni should not have to provide the University with information more than one time, and their requests for restrictions on use of the information must be respected. This policy supports Ohio’s compliance with the CAN-SPAM Act, a law that sets rules for commercial email, establishes requirements for commercial messages, and gives recipients the right to have you stop emailing them.

  2. Policy

    1. Advancement services, in the division of university advancement, will maintain a centralized database of official alumni records. Advancement services will ensure that disaster-recovery plans are in place, including routinely storing a backup copy of the centralized database file in a non-adjacent building.
    2. Advancement services will assist units and departments by providing convenient, timely retrieval of information, including online access and the generation of mailing lists for delivery to the Ohio university mailroom (or other approved mail house or vendor), and the generation of email lists for use by advancement communication and marketing (ACM) on behalf of units and departments, as needed.
    3. ACM provides broadcast email services to Ohio staff and alumni volunteers.
    4. Advancement services does not provide postal or email mailing list files (e.g. .csv or .xlsx files) to units, departments or other partners.
    5. Colleges, units, and departments are not to maintain separate, "shadow" databases of biographical (including mail and email addresses) and gift data on Ohio university alumni, in either electronic or hardcopy format. They may keep, and use internally, temporary working copies of information generated directly from the central database.
  3. Procedures

    1. General

      1. All departments needing access to alumni and donor information should contact advancement services, by campus mail, or by e-mail to advinfo@ohio.edu. Broadcast email services can be requested online at https://www.ohio.edu/alumni/email/.
      2. Units and departments needing postal mail lists—or other support in connecting with alumni and friends—should contact their Ohio alumni association liaison by phone at 740-597-4300 or by e-mail at alumni@ohio.edu.
    2. Data

      Departments will work with Advancement Services to incorporate all alumni information that they receive into the central alumni records database. Departments will identify to Advancement Services the reports and data needed to support departmental activities.

    3. Updates

      Individual colleges, units, and departments should refer all alumni who desire to make their own address changes or biographical updates via the Web to the Alumni Relations Web site, accessible through http://www.ohio.edu/alumni/.

      All other updates of information about alumni, including but not limited to, biographical updates, address changes, and employment information, that come to the attention of University employees should be promptly brought to Advancement Services' attention:

      1. Information from hard copy notes is to be forwarded through campus mail.

      2. Information from E-mail and telephone messages is to be forwarded by E-mail to advinfo@ohio.edu.

    4. Transition Process

      This subsection describes the transition process for departments that had been maintaining shadow databases prior to this policy first becoming effective. This subsection will be removed in a future revision of this policy, after all the existing shadow databases have been permanently retired.

      1. Departments will identify and share with university advancement all shadow databases. University advancement will work closely with departments to understand the purpose and use of the data so that a prioritization for conversion of the various databases may be established.

      2. University Advancement will incorporate those lists in the alumni database.

      3. University Advancement will identify and develop appropriate formats for lists and reports to meet the needs of the various divisions and departments.

      4. d. The length of time necessary to complete this process will depend on the quality and size of the databases. University advancement will provide a time estimate to each department. University advancement expects that full implementation will take approximately eighteen months.


Proposed revisions of this policy should be reviewed by:

  1. Executive Staff Policy Review Committee

  2. Advancement leadership

  3. Dean of Students

  4. Academic Deans

  5. OIT Security Office

  6. University Communications and Marketing