Columbus, OH

Alumni organizations offer social, networking opportunities to Ohio State graduates

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The university offers a number of different clubs and societies to graduates through the Alumni Association. Credit: Courtesy of The Ohio State University

As the Spring 2022 commencement nears, many future alumni may be looking to stay connected to the university for years to come.

Wherever graduates end up, the Alumni Association offers opportunities — including clubs and societies— for alumni to get involved in the university, meet new friends and develop professional connections with other Ohio State alumni. At commencement, Ohio State will award more than 12,000 degrees and certificates, qualifying these graduates for membership.

Craig Little, director of alumni engagement at the Alumni Association, said the organization’s purpose is to help any graduate stay in touch with the university along with its alumni of over 600,000 people.

“There is something very special about being a Buckeye, and I think the Alumni Association is really driven to the mission of really being the catalyst that keeps people connected back to Ohio State,” Little said.

Alumni clubs, made up of more than 125 groups around the world, are geographically based for alumni to meet up and share their experiences with Buckeyes nearby, according to the Alumni Association website . The clubs are open to all Ohio State graduates in cities ranging from Philadelphia to San Francisco as well as more than 40 counties in Ohio.

Leyla Hawkins, president of the Franklin County Alumni Club, said the group puts on social events — such as game watches , gift exchanges during the holidays and banquets. She said these year-round events are great ways for Ohio State alumni to meet others and provide opportunities for graduates to network and further their careers after college.

“It’s a way to meet people,” Hawkins said. “If you’re a recent graduate, networking helps for getting your career going, especially if you move to another state where you don’t know anybody.”

Additionally, alumni societies are mainly found in Columbus and are based on organizations found at the university, according to the Alumni Association website. The more than 50 societies , such as the College of Arts and Sciences and Marching Band Alumni Societies, put on events — including reunions, service projects and social gatherings.

Little said, the Alumni Association also offers various events for alumni — including trips to sporting events and amusement park trips . He said the organization has a virtual scavenger hunt for upcoming graduates until May 15.

Little said he hopes the 2022 graduates will use the opportunities the Alumni Association offers, keeping them connected to Ohio State and other alumni for life.

“We want them to continue to represent Ohio State as they have as students,” Little said. “We look forward to being the catalyst that starts this next chapter in their lives.”

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