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Ambitious plan for alumni relations under new Director

The University has appointed a new Director of Alumni Relations, who has plans to develop an engaging and innovative programme with wide appeal and real impact.

Grant Spence has a background in change management, communications, operations management and corporate governance, spanning the financial services and higher education sectors. He says he wants Edinburgh to have an alumni relations programme that matches its standing as one of the world's leading universities.

Director of Alumni Relations Grant Spence, in Old College

Making a difference

"We want to involve our alumni in the life and work of the University in new ways and on a larger scale," says Grant.

"That might be standing alongside us as we take the University out into the local community, helping shape the career choices of our students as they look beyond graduation, or working with us in other ways to give our students an even better experience, before they in turn join our ever-expanding global alumni community.

"We also plan to enhance the services we offer for the benefit of our alumni."

Grant takes up the newly defined Alumni Relations remit having recently served as the University's Director of Development and Alumni Services. He has played a central role in several key projects including a planned new student-alumni communications portal, preparations for new data protection rules coming into force in 2018, and the shaping of alumni communications. 

We want to involve our alumni in the life and work of the University in new ways and on a larger scale.

Grant Spence, Director of Alumni Relations

Compelling vision

"Grant beat off strong national and international competition for the post by outlining a compelling vision of how alumni can become yet more deeply ingrained in programmes both on campus and on a genuinely global basis," says Chris Cox, Vice-Principal Philanthropy and Advancement and Executive Director of Development and Alumni. "I am delighted that Grant is taking up this strategically important new position."

Grant has responsibility for the Alumni Engagement, Events and Protocol, and Communications teams. "I know Grant will combine energy and focus in consolidating recent progress and taking bold new ideas forwards," says Chris.

Alumni with an interest in helping to develop and deliver this vision are invited to contact Grant at grant.spence@ed.ac.uk.

Grant Spence

Director of Alumni Relations

  • Development and Alumni

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