The Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute’s Alumni Association (CHCI-AA) was established in 1998 as a group of former CHCI fellows for the purpose of establishing a national network of Hispanic/Latino professionals and leaders dedicated to the advancement and development of alumni of the CHCI Public Policy Fellowship Program. In 2002, the CHCI-AA voted to include former summer interns and scholarship award recipients who have graduated from college. In 2012, the AA recognized graduates of the R2L NextGen Program as junior alumni of the association.
Today, the mission of the CHCI-AA is to support CHCI in developing the next generation of Latino leaders through lifelong alumni engagement and leadership advancement. It envisions CHCI alumni actively engaged in developing Latino leaders, involved civically in their communities, supporting CHCI’s programs, and continually developing their own professional and leadership skills.
In support of CHCI’s 2010-2015 Strategic Plan: Keeping the Promise, the CHCI-AA’s primary objective is to promote the lifelong engagement of its membership to give back to CHCI and the Latino community. It meets these objectives by:
- Providing professional development opportunities for members
- Advancing volunteer and mentoring support for CHCI program participants
- Promoting alumni giving and fundraising efforts for CHCI
- Elevating the visibility and engagement of alumni via various social media platforms in support of CHCI mission
CHCI Alumni Association Constitution
In November 1997, a group of former CHCI fellows began discussing the prospect of creating an Alumni Association for the purpose of establishing a national network of Hispanic/Latino professionals and leaders dedicated to the advancement and development of alumni of the CHCI Public Policy Fellowship Program. This group initially formed the CHCI Alumni Advisory Committee to undertake this task.
Based out of Washington, DC, the Advisory Committee met on numerous occasions to draft the mission, vision and primary objectives of the Alumni Association. With the full support of the CHCI Board, the official launch of the CHCI Fellows Alumni Association took place in September 1998 during the CHCI Issues Conference and Gala. In 2002, the Association voted to include former summer interns and scholarship award recipients who have graduated from college. The Association officially became the CHCI Alumni Association.
Since its inception, the Association has continually worked toward the mission of establishing an intranet of shared resources, information, and experiences for alumni. Over 1400 students have completed CHCI's programs since CHCI was established in 1978. These alumni reflect the diversity of the Hispanic community in heritage, background, experiences, and regions. It is the intent of the Association to tap into these valuable alumni from around the country for the purpose of sharing experiences as leaders, professionals, and contributors to their community.
Thus far the Association has been responsible for maintaining a comprehensive directory of former CHCI fellows containing information on alumni dating back to 1981. The alumni directory is an ongoing project that is being updated and maintained as a valuable resource to both former and current fellows. In addition, the Association has made a strong commitment to CHCI by coordinating events that connect current CHCI fellows and interns with alumni who reside within the DC area. These events have provided a great opportunity for alumni to mentor and share their valuable experiences with current participants of CHCI's programs.
As the CHCI Alumni Association continues to develop, it is always looking for ways to better accomplish its mission. One of the most recent projects was the creation of an alumni web portal on the CHCI website as a better way for alumni to communicate with one another. This portal will make it easier for CHCI alumni to share information with each other and access information regarding CHCI events and alumni-related activities. Additionally, CHCI Alumni Association launched two social networking spaces for Alumni interaction: a Facebook Page and a Linkedin group (see links below). The Association is also committed to maintaining an informational page on the CHCI website. The Alumni webpage will be updated monthly with information on the Alumni Association activities and profiles of selected alumni, like the "Alumnus of the Month" series. Finally, a representative of the CHCI Alumni Association will sit on the CHCI Board, the Association has an excellent opportunity to provide unique perspectives and valuable feedback regarding the various CHCI programs.
For more information, please contact Janet Arias at firstname.lastname@example.org.