Charlotte and the surrounding area has a strong Citadel alumni network, and I am honored to have been involved with this club this past 7 years and proud to be the president of the club for the past 2 years. Five years ago, we implemented a new structure for the club with regards to events and social gatherings with the goal to make the Charlotte Area Citadel Club more accessible and available to alumni. We all have demands and commitments for our time and we wanted to structure the club with a variety of opportunities and events throughout the year to attract more participation from alumni. Thankfully, we have seen success from this model and increased alumni engagement.
We have three major events each year (Muster, Oyster Roast, and Back to School BBQ) that alumni can count on and know we will have a strong attendance. Scattered among these main events are informal happy hours each month that rotate to different areas throughout Charlotte to make participation in a club even more accessible. Additionally, The Bulldogs come to the Charlotte area a couple times each year to play Davidson or Winthrop and we use those as opportunities to rally alumni to connect and to cheer on the team. Add to all of this our online presence with the club website, emails, and social media platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook, and the CACC creates a variety of opportunities for those who want to get engaged with Charlotte Citadel Alumni possible.
The club has a strong leadership team with Rob Wick as Vice President who has been involved with the club for years and has been instrumental in helping make the right changes to keep the club relevant to alumni. John Blomberg has also been active in the club for years and his technology savvy mind has enabled us to have a great website for administering the functions of the club. New to the leadership team this year are Tatum Gressette and Brett Miller. I am pleased to have them join our team and encouraged by their desire to see the club grow.
Participation at our club events and club membership has steadily increased over the past year. Membership is up about 20% and of the 55 dues paying members, 20% fall into our young alumni category, which we define as graduated within the past 5 years. It is still a tough economy and will continue to stress participation over membership and put the Citadel network to work to help alumni make connections that lead to employment or new career paths.
We’ve established a good model for our club and one that works well for Charlotte. We want to build upon a great foundation that has been laid by past club leaders. My main goal is to engage and re-engage alumni in the Charlotte area and we have a seasoned team of officers to help us support this direction. I hope you join us!
Ted Boyd, ‘99