Liberal Arts Institutions

The Evergreen State College

The Evergreen State College

July 26, 2021

For this edition of Almabase Spotlights featuring Liberal Arts Institutions, we shine the spotlight on The Evergreen State College and how they used their programming to raise awareness on important societal and cultural issues during their Return To Evergreen - Alumni Weekend.

💡 An Idea to Highlight Important Societal Issues during Alumni Weekend

The Return to Evergreen usually features about 30 events of varying sizes designed to engage alumni, donors, and friends over the span of five days. However, as virtual events became the new normal in 2020, the Advancement team decided to deliver their programming during the course of one day. The event, which lasted for four hours, featured an opening plenary, four breakout sessions (as opposed to 21 in 2019), and themed social hours. This allowed the team to deliver on the event's goal of celebrating the spirit of life-long learning while avoiding the screen fatigue many event participants were experiencing.

💛 Art in a Time of Resistance and Social Change

Return to Evergreen 2020 included four carefully curated programs (break-out sessions) featuring alumni and faculty leaders in public service working to solve societal challenges through a lens of racial justice and equity. Sessions like Art in a Time of Resistance and Change, served as a beacon to bring racial, cultural, and social justice to the forefront. Topics like wealth disparity, immigration, racism, climate change, and gun violence were a vital part of the conversations. "It was important the event be representative of what our society is experiencing now. We love using the break-out sessions to spotlight how alumni are contributing to the world using their Evergreen education and the dialogue generated about societal and cultural issues with attendees," said Correan Barker, Associate Director, of Events, Alumni and Donor Relations.

Return to Evergreen - Alumni Weekend landing page

The Advancement team found that events with a strong learning outcome performed well with their community. Return to Evergreen was a big success, having garnered 423 registrants and 191 unique attendees, exceeding the team's expected goal of 300 registrants and 150 unique attendees.

⭐ Our Source of Inspiration

Correan Barker is the Associate Director of Events, Alumni & Donor Relations at The Evergreen State College and an award-winning nonprofit, advancement, and MPA leader. He has concentrated expertise in special events, development marketing and communications, donor relations, and alumni engagement. One of his many noteworthy achievements include leading his Advancement division in growing support for the College’s annual scholarship fundraiser the Art of Giving Gala & Auction by more than $1 million dollars over the last four years.

Correan has a Master of Public Administration with a focus in nonprofit management and organizational leadership from The Evergreen State College.

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