You've heard it since you first became a freshman here, right? Once a Blugold, always a Blugold. Those aren't just catchy words around here — we mean it, and from purely social events, travel groups, invitations to speak and present, and career advising services for all alumni, we go out of our way to show it.
Along with the ways we try to demonstrate our ongoing affection and appreciation for alumni, we sometimes ask for something in return. This could be a donation to a scholarship fund or building project, or perhaps becoming part of our Hire A Blugold career networking platform designed to help new graduates secure jobs through alumni connections in industry. The different ways of "giving back" as alumni are too numerous to count.
As a graduate of our Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) program, you could be the key to a whole new way to "give back."
We are now hoping to enlist your help in a new role, a different type of gift, and all we really ask of you is that you be present.
Really, that's all we ask. Sound too easy? It is.
Students of color at UW-Eau Claire
For alumni of color, it comes as no surprise that incoming students of color on this campus report fairly widely that they struggle here to some degree, both academically and socially. It is, after all, a small campus in the Midwest with a student body that is less than 10% students of color. Whether these students arrive from another predominantly white school or city, or they have lived in more diverse places, there's no way around it — it can be isolating, and even our best efforts towards equity cannot level some parts of the playing field. We know this, and seek every day more ways to create an atmosphere where all students can learn and flourish equally.
That's where you can help us.
Seeing is believing
Research shows that to shrink achievement gaps in higher education, students of color need to see more people of color. Think of your time here — yes, you graduated, and but would your experience have been better if you'd simply seen more people who looked like you? In class, on campus mall, at events, at athletic events, on campus social media?
Our faculty and staff diversity numbers are improving, but it still can't really offer our students of color the balance that could help them "see themselves" here and increase their own sense of belonging and success.
Your presence can help
As alumni, the positive impact that your visible connection to campus can make is immeasurable. Even the simple act of engaging with current students on social media can make the difference between a student "seeing themselves" as a future graduate and someone who does not make personal connections to campus and elects to leave.
If every alumni person of color could forge a lasting and visible connection to campus, just simply by showing up (in person or in cyber space), new students could gain a few hundred new chances to "see themselves" each year.
Are you ready to learn how easy and fun this can be?
The links to the left will take you to resources that could be of use to students you interact with, some amazing examples of alumni who provide role models for students, as well as the easiest ways to get started as an active member of the Blugold OMA alumni family.
Submit your email to join OMA Alumni update emails--we do the legwork to find events that provide great opportunities to return to campus, and link you right to social media where you can join in conversations with current students.