For most graduating seniors, their connection with TCU will not end with their journey across the stage in May.
Katelyn Fischer, a finance and accounting major, said she planned to stay involved with her alma mater after graduation, even as she moves out of Horned Frog country.
“I hope to be active, but I will not be living in Fort Worth,” said Fischer, who will be moving to Houston to work as an auditor for the accounting firm Deloitte. “I’m hoping that I’ll be able to make it back, and attend events and eventually move back here.”
Fischer said alumni remain an important part of TCU and should continue to help improve the university.
“I think the role of alumni is to benefit the university and work towards the advancement of the role of TCU as a forerunner in the nation,” she said. “[We’re] shaping how TCU will be in the future.”
Fischer said she had heard of Young Alumni groups, but had not yet tried to get involved.
Fischer said it would be difficult to leave her friends behind when she graduated.
“I think I will miss…having my friends with me all in one place, living together,” she said. “It’ll be hard as we all go our separate ways.”
Carrie Wright Brown, associate director of alumni relations, said graduating did not mean students needed to sever ties with their friends as they moved away.
Brown said froglinks.com, the alumni website, is an important tool for TCU graduates looking to stay involved with the school and each other. The website provides information about former students across the country as well as any meetings or events, she said.
“That’s a great way to keep our alumni connected [if] they aren’t living in the chapter. But if the alumni are lucky enough to live in one of our 16 chapter cities, we have tons of programming that goes on,” she said, comparing the site to the online community Facebook. “That’s our mission, to actively engage our alumni so that they have that connection.”
There are Young Alumni chapters in Fort Worth, Houston and Dallas that are geared towards alumni that have been out of school for fewer than 10 years, according to the website. The groups provide a chance to socialize and network with other Horned Frogs.
Brown said she encourages students to get involved with the university as soon as they graduate. She said seniors should update their profiles on froglinks.com so the university could stay in touch with them and provide information about alumni events or opportunities in their city.
“The only way we can get a hold of people is if they update their information,” she said. “Students’ email accounts will shut down after they graduate at TCU, and so if they don’t update, it’s hard for us to keep track of them.”
Brown said recent graduates move often, making it harder to provide the information about networking or alumni gatherings. One such get-together is the annual Frog5 Tailgate, an event for alumni who have graduated within the last five years. The tailgate is held on the lawn of the Kelly Alumni Center and usually brings in about 800-1,000 recent grads, Brown said.
Brown said many TCU graduates choose to give back by donating to the university. Interested students in their final year can donate to the senior class legacy and are encouraged to donate to the university once they leave.
“We are definitely seeing a trend in giving among our young alumni,” Brown said.