Why Are Class Notes at the Back of the Magazine?

Everybody loves class notes.  How many times have you received your alumni magazine, only to quickly thumb to the back section to peruse tweet-like updates from your classmates?  Class notes continue to be the primary way that most (non Facebook-friend) alumni stay connected.

I was recently reading a UMagazinology blog post that referenced the findings of Middlebury Magazine’s recent reader survey.

Middlebury editor Matt Jennings discussed the alumni preferences that arose in the survey:

“Among the things you’re interested in: campus controversies (79 percent); issues facing higher education (73 percent); admissions policies (71 percent); student issues (70 percent); alumni profiles (69 percent); international issues (69 percent); the academic experience (68 percent); and, of course, class notes (85 percent!).”

It isn’t surprising that the class notes section was the top-ranked content.  Middlebury’s findings are consistent with the 2009 CASE Magazine Readership Survey.  But it made me wonder why class notes are typically found at the back of alumni magazines in small-fonts with very few photos.

Are there examples of schools that have taken unique approaches to investing in their alumni class notes?  Do any schools actually lead with class notes?

Ever True!


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