The Alumni Engagement Award Program provides funding and marketing support for programs sponsored by key constituents of the university and alumni community, enabling the Office of Alumni Relations to extend programmatic benefits and services to a diverse array of the alumni population. Our goal is to help you build and maintain connections among your fellow alumni by sponsoring your programming, whether it be a panel discussion, networking event or a service project. We also welcome programming that provides opportunities for current students to connect with alumni.

Applications are accepted on behalf of both single and partnering constituents.

• A single constituent will represent a single body, office, or individual proposing an initiative i.e. John Smith, SPA/BA ’02, president of Eagle Advocates Tours or The Office of Student Activities.  

• A partnering constituent will represent multiple bodies, offices, or individuals proposing an initiative i.e. John Smith, SPA/BA ’02, president of Eagle Advocates Tours and The Office of Student Activities

In addition to the monetary award, recipients will receive the following marketing support from the Office of Alumni Relations:
  • Calendar posting of the event on the OAR events calendar
  • Inclusion in the Alumni Update, a monthly e-newsletter distributed to all alumni on the third Wednesday of each month, pending the appropriate lead time
  • Inclusion in appropriate regional events blast, if applicable, distributed to all alumni in specific regions on the first Wednesday of each month
  • Inclusion in the campus events blast, if applicable, distributed the fourth Wednesday of every month
  • Postings on OAR’s pages on TwitterLinkedIn, and Facebook, if applicable (post-event highlights on Flickr, if applicable/desired)
  • Dedicated blast e-mail, if applicable, to a specific subset of the alumni population

The Office of Alumni Relations will also provide templates for nametags and sign-in sheets, as well as a paper banner for the event and giveaways for attendees, as appropriate.

Engagement Award Review Criteria

Applications will be reviewed on the second and fourth Tuesday of every month. Notification of application status will be provided within six business days of review. Applications will be considered based on the following criteria:

  • Effectiveness in reaching a broad cross-section of alumni, or in reaching a strategically targeted segment of the alumni body;
  • Degree to which there is collaboration with other alumni organizations or programs;
  • Degree to which current students are part of the programming;
  • Degree to which the Engagement Award funds supplement university and outside funds;
  • Extent to which a senior development or alumni relations officer was consulted and/or supports the funding request.


Engagement Award Program Guidelines

The Fall 2015 award cycle opens on August 10, 2015, and closes on November 24, 2015. All events must occur before December 18, 2015.

The Spring 2016 award cycle opens on January 11, 2016, and closes on June 14, 2016. All events must occur before June 30, 2016.
There are no awards offered between June 15 and August 5, 2016

  • There will be a fall and spring award cycle each year.
  • No more than one engagement award will be reviewed from a single or partnering constituent during a season.
  • Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.
  • No single constituent award will exceed $500, and no partnering constituent award will exceed $1000. No single or partnering constituent shall receive more than two awards per cycle.
  • Engagement Awards are honored as reimbursements.
  • Invoices and receipts must be submitted no later than 2 weeks from the date of the event or date of approval for other expenses, such as mailings, postage, etc. Failure to adhere to the reimbursement timeline may impact future award requests.
  • Awards will not be granted for purposes that have some commercial benefit to the organizers or attendants.
  • Award recipients are expected to list the American University Alumni Association (AUAA) as an “official co-sponsor” of the initiative, and all marketing materials listing the AUAA's affiliation should be sent for approval to Isaac Thweatt, director of alumni outreach, in advance of printing or public release.
  • The AUAA or a representative of the Office of Development and Alumni Relations must be offered the opportunity to attend and speak at any live events.
  • Award recipients must maintain an event attendance,  program participation, and/or alumni volunteer participant list that will be forwarded to Isaac Thweatt no later than three business days after the event. The event attendance list, program participation, and/or alumni volunteer participant list should include at least first and last name, degree information, a preferred phone number contact, and a preferred email address for each participant. Failure to adhere to the list submission timeline may impact future award requests.


An awards cycle is a period of time in which the Alumni Engagement Award may be disbursed. If this phrase is not preceded by a season, then this time period is August to June (11 consecutive months).  Annually, awards are not given in the month of July.

A season is the equivalent to an academic semester. For the alumni engagement award process, we will only designate Fall and Spring as seasons.


QUESTIONS? Please contact  Isaac W. K. Thweatt, director of alumni outreach at 202-885-5930.


    Alumni Relations        
    4400 Massachusetts Ave., NW
    Isaac W.K. Thweatt
    Director of Alumni Outreach

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