Franklin & Marshall College Franklin & Marshall College

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Regional Event Preferences Survey

Franklin & Marshall College

 Regional Chapter Program

“Regional Event Preferences Survey”


F&M’s Regional Chapter Program is charged by its mission statement to engage alumni, parents and friends through high-quality and innovative events, and as a result of these enriching experiences, to strengthen the extended College community. 

Given the sophisticated nature of our audience, we recently solicited your opinions in an online survey in order to learn more about your interests and the value you hope to derive from your connection to F&M. Over 500 members of our extended community completed this survey, providing invaluable feedback that we are using to plan the coming year’s events nationwide. We hope you will join us at a regional event near you to see how your feedback has been used to improve the F&M Regional Chapter experience! 


1. During what time period did you graduate from F&M?

 29.3%. 2000s 
17.4%  90s 
21.3%  80s 
17.9%  70s 
14.1%  Other 

We had respondents from as far back as pre-1950 to the most recent years. The largest group was our most recent grads from 2000 or later with The 70s, 80s, and 90s followed with 17.9%, 21.3%, and 17.4% respectively. 

2. What is your occupation?

Our survey was completed by those in a wide variety of professions. Respondents identified careers in the following categories: academia, finance, social and physical sciences, teaching, writing, healthcare, and law. This finding emphasized the diversity of interests among our F&M community members.

3. Tell us about yourself?

The majority of respondents hail from the Northeast. However, we also heard from Texas, Florida, California, Tennessee, and Illinois. International respondents were from London, England, and Seoul, South Korea.

4. Which of the following campus events have you attended in the past two years?

5%  Board Meetings 
10%  Commencement and Cultural Events 
20%  Reunion, Athletic Events, or not at all 
30%  Homecoming 
50%  Informal Visits 

5. How many regional chapter events have you attended in your area in the past two years?

46%  none 
44%  a few 
10 % on a regular basis 

6. At what time of day do you prefer to attend chapter events?

 9.7%  Weekday Daytime
 65.0%  Weekday Evening
51.4% Weekend Daytime
 38.9%  Weekend Evening


7. At what time of year do you prefer to attend chapter events?


 69.5%  Spring 
 51.0%  Summer
 72.0%  Fall
 43.2%  Winter

8. Event location: Are you most likely to attend events that are…

78.5%  Close to home 
49.2%  Close to work 
47.3%  City 
22.6%  Suburb 

9. Given a great program and an F&M block of hotel rooms at an attractive location, how far are you willing to travel?

 20.6%  Within 10 miles
 32.1%  Up to 20 miles
 27.3%  Up to 50 miles
 20.0%  50 or more miles

 10. Which types of Regional Chapter programs interest you?

 There were significant responses for all event types listed which indicates that you want a diverse selection of events in your area. The big winners with approximately 60% each are Historical/Current Events, Cultural, and Social. This is borne out by large attendance at this year’s blockbuster events, the Forums on Presidential Politics, and other historical and cultural events. The next most popular event themes with about 45% each were Career and Academic.

11. What do you enjoy most about Regional Chapter events?

 The strongest responses at about 60% each were “socializing with fellow alumni” and “staying connected with F&M.” This explains the dramatic growth in attendance at chapter events over the past year. No matter what the event type, it seems the draw is ultimately the people.

12. How do you prefer to hear about events in your area and other Regional Chapter news?

11.6%  Postcard 
82.4%  E-mail 
4.7%  Newsletter 
1.3%  Other 

This result may be skewed since the survey was only sent to people with active email addresses on file with the college. Currently, we only have about half of all alumni email addresses. So, for the time being it will be important to supplement electronic communication with paper. If you do not have your email on file with the College, email to to get on the list for all of the latest news and event announcements!

13. If you could change one thing about Regional Chapter Events, what would it be?

 Some respondents expressed that they would like to see increased event attendance in their regions. In 2008, as existing chapters grew and new chapters gained their footing, we saw the beginning of some very positive attendance trends, and you can help us build this momentum! If you have enjoyed Chapter events in the past, tell your friends about the great time you had at F&M events in your area, and when you register for events in the coming year, invite them to join you!

 Also, many requested that we do more to showcase F&M faculty and accomplished alumni and parents as guest speakers, and this is a point we discussed in depth with Chapter leaders at September’s Leadership Retreat. Chapters nationwide are looking forward to bringing you more of the “F&M Connection” in the coming year. 

14. If you could change one thing about Regional Chapter Communications, what would it be?

Many said they were happy with communications. Some also shared that more information, and earlier notice, would be welcome. You will be glad to learn that as our Regional Chapter Program grows, so too are the marketing efforts on its behalf. In the coming year you will see more frequent and regular mailings and e-newsletters with more advanced notice of event opportunities. In addition, the College’s newly designed website, which will go “live” in January 2009, will be a fantastic tool for staying connected with Regional Chapter events as well as on-campus happenings like Homecoming and Reunion.

15. Would you like someone to contact you about getting involved with your Regional Chapter?

 Over 90 of you volunteered to help in this effort. For that we are very grateful. You will be contacted by someone on the Alumni Association’s Board of Directors or in your Regional Chapter.

16. Please take this opportunity to share any ideas you have for future Regional Chapter events.

 You provided a long list of excellent event ideas that have been communicated to Regional Chapter leaders. Thank you for your interest and ideas!