The College Alumni Program office of the Harvard Alumni Association plans events throughout the year to engage undergraduate students at Harvard College with members of their alumni community. We welcome you to take advantage of these opportunities.
Student-Alumni Engagement Events
Don’t wait until you get your diploma to engage with your alumni community. The College Alumni Programs office of the Harvard Alumni Association (HAA) plans events throughout the year to engage undergraduate students at Harvard College with members of their alumni community. We hope you’ll join us for one of these opportunities!
Convocation welcomes the incoming first-year students to Harvard College, providing them with an understanding of the values, history, and traditions of the institution.
On September 1, 2009, Harvard College inaugurated a new tradition of formally welcoming the incoming first-year students. The Class of 2013 experienced the first First-Year Convocation, a celebratory ceremony akin to the ritual pomp and circumstance of Commencement. The tradition of Convocation has continued each year since. Convocation is held the day before the first day of fall semester classes.
Prior to the ceremony, first-year students and alumni volunteers will process into Tercentenary Theatre for the program. During the procession, first-year students also receive their class pins from the alumni, which they proudly display during the ceremony and throughout events during their time at and after Harvard College.
Ever wondered what the Harvard Alumni Association is, or how to get involved? Want to learn how to connect with alumni now and stay connected to this community in the years to come? Looking for a mentor who has been in your shoes? Wondering how to join a Club or a Shared Interest Group? The HAA hosts information sessions throughout the year for students to learn more about our organization and the resources available to you.
Networking 101 events, planned in partnership between the HAA and Houses with additional resources provided by the Mignone Center for Career Success, allow for students to learn about HAA resources that can connect them with the alumni community and practice networking tips and tricks with alumni in a casual setting. These are not hiring or recruiting events, but simply an opportunity for students to become more comfortable with networking in large groups, while meeting new members of the Harvard community.
Following a short presentation on HAA resources and the basics of networking, you will be able to practice your skills in a series of breakouts. Note that these are not career-specific sessions, but an opportunity for you to learn about and practice networking and meet new members of the Harvard student and alumni community!
Alumni Coffee Chats
The Alumni Coffee Chats program is designed to connect undergraduate students with alumni over conversation. Students are encouraged to reach out to alumni in the Career Network in the HAA Alumni Directory and on the Mignone Center for Career Success' Firsthand Advisers platform during Flash Mentoring Month in January to set up informal meetings with alumni. This is a great opportunity to get career advice on different pathways, strengthen your informational interviewing skills, expand your support network as you consider opportunities beyond Harvard, learn about their student and alumni life experience, and more! While January is a great time to set up Coffee Chats, note that you have access to these platforms to connect with alumni year-round and can reach out them at any time.
Senior Thesis Study Break Dinner
Seniors, will you be back on campus early in January to work on your thesis? Enjoy a much-deserved study break dinner at the Harvard Alumni Association on Tuesday, January 16, at 6:00 p.m. Wondering how to navigate the final months of thesis writing? Alumni thesis writers will join us to share their experiences and best practices. Connect with fellow thesis writers and get excited for your senior spring!
Class Color Connect
Class Color Connect provides sophomores with the opportunity to come together as a class during a year of entering new House and academic communities, as well as meet recent graduate alumni members of their class color community. The class colors tradition at Harvard dates back to 1882, when seniors, juniors, and sophomores on the crew team were assigned a color to represent class identity: green (for Dartmouth), blue (for Yale), and orange (for Princeton). This tradition was revived with the Class of 2012.
Class Families provides juniors with the opportunity to come together as a class, as well as meet alumni members of their Class Family. The end of your junior year is a time to reflect on your Harvard experience so far and think about how to make the most of your upcoming final year at Harvard. We hope you take this opportunity to reconnect with your class community and Class Family ahead of your senior year!
The junior class is part of a Class Family that includes their Recent Grad Sibling Classes (the classes five and ten years removed), their Parent Class (the class twenty-five years removed), and their Grandparent Class (the class fifty years removed).
Public Interested Conference
Public Interested is a collaborative event coordinated by the Center for Public Service & Engaged Scholarship at Harvard College. This conference is designed to allow students to explore various public interest topics and careers and network with alumni working in and interested in those fields. Alumni and students can hear from inspiring speakers, interact with other alumni, participate in engaging activities, and meet peers who share a passion for public service.
Creative Careers Panel
The Creative Careers Panel is a collaborative event planned by the Office for the Arts, the Harvard Alumni Association, and the Mignone Center for Career Success. This panel, for an audience of undergraduate students and recent College graduates, will feature four alums working in the arts sharing their stories and advice. A social networking reception will follow the panel. This event will take place on Friday, March 1, at 4:00 p.m. Students can now register!
Student Organization Alumni Engagement Info Sessions
The HAA hosts information sessions throughout the year for leaders of student organizations to learn more about our organization and the resources available to student organizations to connect with their alumni members. These sessions will cover the importance of keeping in touch with alumni members, as well as how to track alumni members, how to send them email communications, and how to best engage them with your group.
Winter Recess and Wintersession
The HAA partners with campus partners and alumni volunteers to offer programs and events that connect alumni and students during the winter break. Wintersession, the last week of Winter Recess before classes begin, is a time when students may participate in programs that encourage personal reflection, intellectual curiosity, and social interaction.
Do you have questions or program ideas? Contact John Prince AB ’13, ALM ’18, Associate Director of College Alumni Programs at the Harvard Alumni Association.