September 23, 2020

BY MARK FITZGERALD

Conestoga College is looking to make deeper connections with its alumni through the new Conestoga Net Community.
The online site will eventually allow alumni to have their own profiles that they can update regularly, communicate with the college, receive newsletters and specific updates, register for events, and make and track online donations.
Tim Tribe, director of development, and Louise Williams, development research officer, have been heading the creation of this completely in-house program. Their goal is to create an efficient self-sustaining way to stay connected and build relationships with alumni.
Net Community is still under development, but is being designed with room to grow.
“We can see the potential,” said Tribe, adding that it is important to find out “what the alumni really want” out of the program, and then try to implement those features.
The program is also a way to maintain a social media presence, but specifically gear the experience toward Conestoga alumni.
One of the features they would like to add later on would be a community message board. They said the key to this would be making it self-sufficient and self-monitoring, because Net Community as a whole is meant to free up staff. They are also looking into e-cards, a digital greeting card.
They said they are looking to perfect each feature they are working on right now before they move onto bigger things.
“We could rush out the door with it. We want to create value,” said Williams. She also said it is important to find out what is of value to alumni.
Conestoga Net Community is expected to be fully released in the new year, with hopes of having alumni updating their profiles on the site as early as November.