Alumnae Group Levels


Group Level Formality Governance
Model A - Online Discussion Groups Low No formal governance
Model B - Communities Medium Run by committee (no formal vote necessary)
Model C - Groups High Officers elected to board positions 
Bylaws serve as the governing rules of the group


Online Discussion Group

This group is a “virtual” group whose primary connections are made through a Discussion Group or LinkedIn Group.  Members can post messages to share their experiences, seek advice, provide resources, or forward information about relevant events.  

To start an Online Discussion Group:

  1. Visit the Discussion Group area of the Online Community to see if there is already a group created.  
  2. If there is not a Discussion Group created on your topic of interest, Submit a Request for it.  
  3. Once your Discussion Group has been set up, post a message to it so that when others subscribe, there is at least one posting to see.
  4. Invite other alumnae to participate in the Discussion Group.

To start a LinkedIn Group, please contact the associate director of alumnae connections


Communities are run by committee as opposed to a formal board of officers.  The committee serves to organize communications through broadcast emails and an online discussion group, maintain a website, and assist in the development of local or regional events.  Communities do not have a bank account through which they process dues and donations.  Communities are a good “middle” option for groups that want to be more than just an online discussion group, but don’t need the formal structure of a Model C alumnae group.

To create an Alumnae Community:

  1. Email the following information:
    • Proposed name of community
    • Purpose of community
    • Description of membership including estimated number of alumnae (if known)
    • Primary contact for community
    • Names of volunteers to serve on a committee
  2. The Alumnae Association will assist with:
  • The creation of an online Discussion Group if one doesn’t already exist.  This will serve to supplement communications from the committee as well as give members a forum through which they can have an online conversation.
  • The creation of a website for the community.  Please refer to our Volunteer Connections section for more information on the website options available to alumnae groups.
  • The creation of the membership list.  The Alumnae Association will work with the committee to identify members, get them coded in the Alumnae Association’s database, invite them to become members of the group, and produce membership lists and directories.  
  • An annual gathering of members at Reunion. The Alumnae Association will work with the committee to organize an on-campus meeting of members during reunion weekend.



Of the three levels, an alumnae group is the most structured.  Alumnae groups have by-laws, a board of officers and regional representatives, and a bank account through which dues and donations are processed.  It is recommended that alumnae groups have a minimum of 40 members to sustain itself organizationally and financially.

To create an alumnae group:

  1. Email a letter of intent to the Associate Director of Alumnae Connections in the Wellesley College Alumnae Association ( The letter of intent should include the following:
    • Proposed name of group
    • Purpose of group
    • Description of membership including estimated number of alumnae (if known)
    •  Primary contact for group  
    • Names of volunteers to serve on a founding committee or a request for help to form a founding committee
  2. Once the letter of intent has been reviewed, the Associate Director will email or call the group’s primary contact to discuss the group’s formation in more detail.
  3. The start-up/founding committee and the Associate Director will meet in person or via conference call to discuss a start-up strategy including:
    •  identification of group members (synchronizing group’s list with WCAA database if necessary)
    •  formation of a founding committee if one is not already in place
    • development a set of goals and timeline for communications, meetings, events, and other activities.  
    • development of a communications plan (emails, e-newsletters, website, discussion group, etc.) 
    • development of group by-laws (if needed)