Alumni Chapters Manual

Welcome to the Alumni Chapters Program

The Alumni Chapters Program, brought to you by the Cal Alumni Association, offers alumni the opportunity to stay involved with and connected to the University, students, and fellow alumni. By volunteering time, energy and talent in this program, you have joined a group of alumni leaders who are committed to supporting the University and connecting alumni with each other.

You and the Alumni Chapters Program are essential to the Cal Alumni Association’s central mission to support and serve our alma mater. The work you and your chapter’s board members do to keep alumni within your community connected back to the University is of the utmost importance. 

Your Alumni Chapter Advisors are committed to partnering with you to create vibrant organizations. We look forward to your successes.

Thank You and GO BEARS!

- The Alumni Chapters Department

Jordan Henigman ’13
Associate Director, Alumni Chapters & The Berkeley Network
510.900.8243 |

Sarah Yi ’99
Program Manager, Southern California & Out-of-State
510.900.8215 |

Kaitlyn Endo
Program Coordinator, Northern California

About the Cal Alumni Association

The Cal Alumni Association (CAA) provides all Cal graduates with rewarding connections to the University, to fellow alumni, and to current students. Founded by the original graduates of the University of California in 1872, the Cal Alumni Association (CAA) today represents nearly half a million alumni living throughout the world. With a mission of advancing and promoting the interests of the University, CAA is committed to providing essential programs and services designed to keep alumni of all ages and interests connected to the University and to each other.

CAA Mission

Our mission is to advance and promote the interests of the University of California, Berkeley by connecting alumni with each other and our alma mater. Together with our campus partners, we play an integral role in informing, engaging, and inspiring alumni to support the University by:

  1. Participating and volunteering in University programs and events,
  2. Acting as ambassadors and advocates on behalf of the University, and
  3. Giving to the University.

CAA Vision

Our vision is to be UC Berkeley’s primary campus-wide alumni relations organization responsible to building and engaging a broad alumni community that supports the University. Together, as a globally connected network of Cal alumni, we keep Cal golden.

Support CAA

As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and self-funded organization, CAA relies on alumni support to operate its programs and provide scholarships to Cal students. When you make a contribution to CAA, you enjoy the satisfaction of knowing that your gift will have significant impact on vital programming for alumni and students, as well as on the future of the University. Learn more »

Alumni Chapters Strategic Plan

The Cal Alumni Association’s Alumni Chapters program is a national grassroots program for alumni of UC Berkeley to connect with one another, engage with the Cal Alumni Association (CAA), and stay connected to the University through leadership and volunteer opportunities, student outreach, local events, social and professional networking, and philanthropy. 

CAA’s Alumni Chapters program has the unique ability to engage a wide breadth of alumni-geographically and demographically-while at the same time building a network that celebrates and supports CAA and the University.  

The 2013-2017 CAA Alumni Chapters Strategic Plan provides a platform for strategic and sustainable program growth by increasing alumni-to-alumni/alumni-to-University/alumni-to-CAA engagement and ensuring overall development of alumni as ambassadors of CAA and the University.

The CAA Alumni Chapters Strategic Plan will also support the eight Global Strategies set forth in the organization wide CAA Strategic Plan by focusing on the following five program-wide goals:

  1. Raise the Alumni Chapters program’s profile within the alumni and campus communities.
  2. Increase the number of alumni who participate in the Alumni Chapters program, overall.
  3. Expand communications between the Alumni Chapters membership base and CAA.
  4. Measure the success of the program and develop stakeholder accountability.
  5. Increase the number of Alumni Chapter members and Alumni Chapters that make philanthropic gifts to CAA and the University.

Program Overview and Tools

The Alumni Chapters Program helps Cal alumni create communities whose purpose is to enhance the University and connect alumni to each other, the University, and the Cal Alumni Association (CAA).

This manual provides practical information for Alumni Chapters as you interact with CAA and lead your Alumni Chapter. Throughout this guide, you will find descriptions of the key elements of the program, helpful information to create and sustain a chapter, and ideas for fulfilling your Services to Cal.

The Alumni Chapters Program is organized around the Services to Cal. The Services to Cal define ways in which the chapters and your members should direct their activities to support the University, CAA, and to build a successful alumni chapter.

All chartered Alumni Chapters are officially registered with CAA and are covered under CAA’s event liability insurance. New Alumni Chapters may apply to join the program at any time. If CAA approves your application, you will need to meet the responsibilities laid out in this manual in order to maintain your charter.

Every year, an Outstanding Alumni Chapter is nominated and awarded at CAA’s annual Charter Gala in March/April. We hope every chapter will aspire to achieve this award.

While this manual strives to answer many of your questions, please know that your Alumni Chapter Advisor is available to provide support and knowledge to help you along the way.


Starting an alumni chapter is easy.

Growing a flourishing, active alumni chapter requires time, commitment and innovation from many alumni volunteers.


Alumni Chapter Resources

As a Chartered Alumni Chapter with the Cal Alumni Association (CAA) you have access to the following organizational, online, and event hosting resources. These resources are specifically designed to help your alumni chapter build an engaged community of alumni and fulfill the responsibilities associated with maintaining a charter with CAA. 

Organizational Resources

  • Dedicated Alumni Chapters Advisor support with the running, managing, and development of your alumni chapter – phone/email/in-person.  Your Alumni Chapters Advisor has extensive experience in event planning/execution, volunteer programming, and non-profit board structure/organization.  
  • Directors and Officers (D&O) liability coverage provided for Board Members.  
  • Usage of CAA’s Tax ID to open a chapter bank account.  
  • Monthly UPDATE email from the Alumni Chapters team with important program updates, event hosting and campus partnership opportunities, and resources to help you and your chapter.  
  • Access to chapter leader quarterly webinars, hosted by the Alumni Chapters team, to hear best practices, event planning strategy, and more.  
  • Access to private Facebook group for networking with fellow chapter leaders.  
  • Exclusive invitation to the annual “Alumni Chapters Leadership Conference” – 2 day intensive conference with workshops and resources to help you develop your alumni chapter.  
  • Access to financial support from CAA – application and approval process required.  
  • One custom banner throughout chapter’s tenure – made available after the chapter’s third consecutive year of charter.

Online Resources

  • Chapter events posted on CAA website and CAA event calendar which receive over 40k unique visitors every month.   
  • Select chapter events may be featured in CAA and campus email and social media communication channels that engage over 200k alumni.  
  • Chapter landing page on CAA website with contact info, chapter description, and links to chapter website and social media.  
  • A website and email tool maintained by the Chapter, hosted and supported through CAA with easy to use interface and training provided by CAA staff.  
  • Emails blasts sent to alumni within your community up to four times per year (3 month rolling basis) to promote your chapter events and volunteer opportunities.  
  • Chapter leader resources offered online including training collateral, how-to manuals, and templates to assist your chapter with maintaining your website, hosting events, managing finances, tracking membership data, and more.  

Event Hosting Resources

  • Event liability coverage for all chapter events, including the ability to list your event venue as an “additional insured”.  
  • Access to the non-profit rate and customer support with Eventbrite for online event registration.  
  • Event support materials are available to all chapters, including nametags and decorations to make your alumni feel welcome and add a bit of blue and gold.  
  • CAA staff attendance at key events as available.  
  • CAA staff assistance and guidance with identifying and securing speakers for chapter events.  

Alumni Chapter Responsibilities

Running a Chartered Alumni Chapter with the Cal Alumni Association (CAA) is a big responsibility and requires the efforts of multiple board members working together to be truly successful. The following responsibilities are the minimum expectations from CAA for an alumni chapter to maintain a charter. Charters are renewed annually (in January) as long as the alumni chapter has fulfilled its responsibilities for the previous year.  

Board Members and Board Structure

  • Primary contact person and three board members must be Cal alumni – minimum expectation.  
  • All board members must be dues paying members of CAA – annual or life membership.  
  • Maintain the minimum bylaws provided by CAA in the Alumni Chapters Manual.  
  • Regular elections for all chapter leadership and board member positions – as defined in bylaws.  
  • All board members must be responsive to inquiries from interested alumni, staff, and students.  
  • Follow the expectations outlined in the Alumni Chapters Manual and the Volunteer Handbook.  
  • Alumni chapter leadership must conduct at least two board member meetings per year.  

Alumni Chapter Reporting

  • Provide an up-to-date alumni chapter membership list by March 1 of each calendar year – Excel compatible format only – template available from CAA if needed.  
  • If chapter uses CAA’s Tax ID for their bank account – provide December bank statement and an “End of Year Balance Sheet” to your advisor by March 1 – template for balance sheet provided by CAA.  
  • Submission of Event Report with attendance list to Alumni Chapters staff two weeks after each event. The Event Report will be made available as an online and printable form.  
  • Provide timely updates to Alumni Chapters staff about any changes in board members’ assignments.  

Alumni Community Engagement

  • Hold at least one event per quarter for all alumni in area/interest.  These four events (annually) should fulfill at least three of the different Services to Cal that are outlined in the Alumni Chapters Manual.  
  • Chapter must maintain an up-to-date website (mandatory) and social media (if applicable).  
  • Maintain regular communications with membership base – at minimum, one email per quarter associated with the event the chapter is hosting – this email can be the quarterly email blast that CAA provides to each chapter.  
  • The Chapter agrees to actively promote CAA membership at their events, in their emails, and on their online communication channels (website/social).  
  • At least 50 active alumni members of the chapter (who consistently attend meetings and events, volunteer, and/or correspond with the chapter regularly).   
  • Co-sponsor CAA/University events and programs in your area (when appropriate and within means).

Officer Structure

To keep the members of your chapter interested and motivated, CAA suggests the following board member positions for chapters. The functions of the positions are more important than the names and chapters might need more or less depending on their level of activity.

CAA wants to ensure tasks are being delegated - it is very likely that burnout will occur if one board members attempts to fulfill all of these roles.

Please notify your Alumni Chapter Advisor as soon as possible after any leadership transition.

We recommend defining term limits in your bylaws for leadership positions to allow for increased involvement of all chapter members.

All officers must be Cal alumni and dues paying members of CAA.

President (or equivalent): This position will oversee the development of the chapter, manage chapter officers, oversee chapter financial health, and serve as liaison to CAA.

President Elect (or equivalent): This position will assist the President with chapter management and this position could be seen as a stepping stone to becoming the President.

Treasurer (or equivalent): This position will maintain accounting records that include expenditures, revenues, and reimbursements.

Membership (or equivalent): This position will be responsible for generating ideas to attract new members, retaining current members, and maintaining an accurate record of membership to be submitted to CAA in June and December of each year.

Communication/Website Master (or equivalent): This position will be responsible for updating and maintaining the chapter’s website, facebook, printed materials, fliers, e-newsletters, etc.

Secretary (or equivalent): This position will maintain the chapter’s records including bylaws, event calendar, chapter’s communication to members, and meeting minutes.


Officer Succession

To keep an active Alumni Chapter healthy, members of the chapter need to transition into and out of leadership roles—this prevents leader burnout and the stagnation of events, ideas, and programs. Remember that while many traditions should be maintained, some change is necessary to keep the chapter vibrant and interesting to new and current members alike. Remember, too, that all leaders need good support, both from other leaders and from the chapter’s membership, to continue a successful organization.

Helpful Tips

  • Hold elections at the same time every year. Do not allow one person to stay in their position year after year without a vote of the membership.
  • Have a plan for transition:
    • An outgoing leader may wish to mentor an incoming leader through a portion of her/his term in a leadership role.
    • Elect a President Elect, making clear who the next President will be.
    • Set term limits: we recommend two- to three-year terms for all officers; these needn’t all be on the same cycle; some of the officers could transition each year.
  • Delegate major event and program planning to members of the Chapter (consider non-officers and new members) with the idea that they will go on to become leaders/officers. You may also consider former officers as people to whom you may delegate tasks.
  • Define your officer structure, volunteer job descriptions, term limits, and succession in bylaws.

Other Suggestions to Promote Success

  • Use committees; delegate work.
  • Encourage members to be involved in organizing or volunteering for programs and events.
  • Periodically survey the interests, skills and resources of your membership. Know whom to turn to for help.
  • Host an event with members to talk about new ideas.
  • Create evaluations for your events to gauge their success.
  • Focus your efforts on programs that are sustainable through leadership transition.  

Sample Bylaws

Bylaws provide structure and purpose to an Alumni Chapter. Every alumni chapter should have bylaws that will enable the chapter to maintain themselves over time. Below are required elements of structurally sound bylaws.  

Also, please visit this website for other helpful tips:

Name: (insert Chapter Name), a chartered alumni chapter of the Cal Alumni Association (CAA).

Purpose: The purpose of this chapter shall be to join local University of California, Berkeley alumni together in organized efforts to benefit the members of the chapter and the University of California, Berkeley, in accordance with the provisions stated in the Alumni Chapters Manual.

Officers: The chapter shall have a governing board consisting of the duly elected officers of the chapter: at least a President, President-Elect, Secretary/Membership Chair, Treasurer and Communication coordinator. All officers must be Cal alumni and dues-paying members of the Cal Alumni Association.

Meetings: Regular meetings shall be held [insert time frame here].

Term of Office: The Chapter will hold annual elections of officers. The term of office shall be limited to two consecutive terms of [insert time frame here] each.

Voting: A majority of officers constitutes a quorum. Passage of a motion requires a simple majority.

Membership: All UC Berkeley Alumni and friends of the University are eligible for membership in the chapter.

Dues (optional): Each member of the chapter will be assessed annual dues of $____ each year.

Amendments: These bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds vote of the chapter membership at any meeting. A change in the bylaws must be submitted to the Cal Alumni Association in writing for approval.

Date/Signatures: Date of approval by Alumni Chapter officers including signatures of President and Secretary.


Financial Organization

Usage of CAA Nonprofit Tax ID

CAA’s Tax ID may be used for the following purposes:

  • To open a bank account for the alumni chapter to pay a discounted, nonprofit rate.
  • To provide to vendors in order to receive a discounted, nonprofit rate.

Bank Accounts

No bank account
An alumni chapter can choose not to collect membership dues or event monies and simply run no-cost events and programs.

Bank account under the Alumni Chapter name using CAA’s tax ID
An alumni chapter can use CAA’s nonprofit Tax ID in order to open a less expensive bank account. CAA requires there to be two active chapter officers listed as signatories on the account.

Please speak with the prospective bank to obtain a list of the necessary documents required to open a bank account. Providing this list to your alumni chapter advisor will speed up the process and save you trips to the bank.

Become a separate nonprofit organization
Alumni Chapters have the option to be a separate nonprofit organization. You will use your tax ID to open your bank account. CAA’s tax ID may not be used for any reason.

These ways are NOT ALLOWED for Chapter Bank Accounts:

Bank account under an individual’s name using the individual’s social security number
The individual would have to report all chapter revenue and expenses on their personal IRS tax return.

Bank account under the Alumni Chapter name using an individual’s social security number
Similar to a bank account in an individual’s name, the individual would have to report all chapter revenue and expenses on their personal IRS tax return.

CAA manages your funds
Logistically, we are unable to provide this service. If your alumni chapter dissolves or is de-chartered, we will hold on to your funds until the alumni chapter reforms itself and then reissue the monies.

Contributions and In-Kind-Gifts


The Cal Alumni Association gratefully acknowledges your generosity and thanks you for your individual and Alumni Chapter contributions. Following are the details for making and accepting contributions:

  • Contributions to Alumni Chapters can be accepted by the Alumni Chapter and considered a contribution to the Alumni Chapter.
  • Alumni Chapters may solicit and collect donations on behalf of CAA or the University.
  • Receipts are provided when gifts are made directly to the Cal Alumni Association or the University.

If individuals want to receive a receipt, please mail a check payable to the Cal Alumni Association or make an online gift.

  1. To make a gift by mail, print the giving form and mail your gift to:

Development Department
Cal Alumni Association
1 Alumni House
Berkeley, CA 94720-7520

  1. To make a credit card gift by phone, please call 510.900.8200.
  2. To make a gift online, visit the CAA website at

CAA recognizes Alumni Chapters hold events or solicit contributions for their CAA scholarship endowment from their members. If an Alumni Chapter solicits contributions for CAA scholarship endowments, CAA kindly requests that individuals make checks payable to the “Cal Alumni Association” with a note indicating where to direct the gift (e.g. Rossmoor TAAP scholarship). Please collect checks and mail them to:

Development Department

Cal Alumni Association
1 Alumni House
Berkeley, CA 94720-7520

Any questions about contributions can be directed to the Senior Director of Development Jennifer Mora at or 510-900-8205.

In-Kind Donations of Goods*

In-kind gifts of goods to Alumni Chapters may be accepted by the Alumni Chapter, but CAA is unable to provide tax receipts. It is suggested individuals consult their legal and tax advisors for professional advice regarding the tax and legal implications of in-kind gifts.

Alumni Chapters may collect in-kind gifts on behalf of CAA scholarships, CAA programs, and other campus departments. These are only tax deductible to the extent provided in the IRS rules [See IRS Publication 526, Charitable Contributions].

If individuals wish to receive University credit for their in-kind gift, please complete the Deed of Gift form and mail it to:

Development Department
Cal Alumni Association
1 Alumni House
Berkeley, CA 94720-7520

Please submit “Deed of Gift” forms to CAA within one month of incurring the expenses.

In-Kind Donations of Services*

In-kind donations of services are not tax-deductible [IRS Publication 526, Charitable Contributions]. CAA cannot provide a tax-deductible receipt for any kind of donated service.

Examples of services:

  • A graphic designer donates her design services to make a t-shirt design.
  • An alumni chapter member volunteers his time to staff an event.
  • A chef donates his time to prepare hors d’oeuvres for a reception.

* NOTE: If you are not certain if a donation is considered a service or a good, please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor for clarification before accepting the contribution.

PayPal Instructions

Setting up a PayPal account for your Alumni Chapter is easy!

Follow these steps:

  1. Go to and click on the “Sign Up” button in the upper right corner.
  2. You will want to open a “Business” account. Click on the “Get Started” button in the “Business” box.
  3. There are 3 different Account Options - CAA recommends the “Standard” account - it is free and will serve all of your alumni chapter needs.
  4. Click the “Get Started” button for whichever Account Option you feel is best for your chapter.
  5. Select “Create New Account” - do not Login with your existing PayPal account - CAA does not recommend linking your personal PayPal to the alumni chapter’s PayPal account.
  6. For “Business Type,” you should pick the following option:
    1. “Nonprofit Organization” – if your chapter’s bank account is in the Alumni Chapter’s name and you are using EITHER CAA’s Tax ID (94-1007751) OR your chapter’s nonprofit tax ID.
  7. The email address that you enter here should not be one that is currently linked to an existing PayPal account.
  8. The “Business Name” should be your alumni chapter name, with the remaining contact fields pertaining to the Alumni Chapter.
  9. For “Category,” pick “Other.”
  10. You will need to enter CAA’s Tax ID - 94-1007751
  11. Fill out the rest of the information and hit “continue.”

From this point forward, the information for you to fill out should be self-explanatory.

Please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor if you have any questions.



From time to time, alumni chapters enter into agreements and contracts with third party entities (e.g., t-shirt vendors, graphic designers, hotels, bars, restaurants). This section aims to provide CAA policies and expectations around such contracts, and how to help alumni chapters prevent and protect themselves against disagreements with third party entities. Please talk with your Alumni Chapter Advisor if you have any concerns or questions before you finalize an agreement or contract.


For the purposes of the Alumni Chapters Program, CAA defines “agreements” as any monetary exchange for goods or services or non-monetary exchange of services for services. These tend to be more informal and may not always include a written agreement that each party signs.

Example 1: An alumni chapter makes an arrangement with a local bar to provide a donation back to the alumni chapter equal to 10% of the final bar tab from the alumni chapter’s happy hour hosted at the bar. In this case the bar is making a donation/monetary payment to the alumni chapter in exchange for promotion and hosting of the event at the bar.

Example 2: A graphic designer donates her services to the alumni chapter in exchange for the chapter promoting them to the members with the hope of netting additional paying business for the graphic designer.

CAA Expectations:

Memorialize these agreements in an email or a written letter with a clear explanation of what is being provided to and received by the alumni chapter and what is being provided to and received by the third party entity, including a clear time line of delivery for both parties. Please define an end date and if there is not, indicate that the agreement is open-ended. Send a copy of the email or written letter confirming the details of the agreement to your Alumni Chapter Advisor.


For the purposes of the Alumni Chapter Program, CAA defines “contracts” as any formal written contract for the provision of services or goods by a third party entity in exchange for monetary payment from an alumni chapter.

Example: An alumni chapter must sign a contract with a hotel in order to reserve an event space and book the catering for its New Student Reception. The contract stipulates that the chapter must commit to a minimum catering expenditure at the time of signing the contract, but the final bill will not be paid until after the event and is based on final food and beverage consumption.

CAA Expectations:

Contracts valued under $1,000: Chapters may sign the contract without prior approval. Please inform your Alumni Chapter Advisor and provide him/her with a copy of the contract.

Contracts valued at $1,000 or more: Chapters may not sign the contract without prior conversation with their Alumni Chapter Advisor. Please provide him/her with a copy of the contract before any final contracts are signed.


Monetary Support - Grant Program


The monetary support via CAA’s grant program is designed to help chapters cover out-of-pocket expenses, meaning that CAA will only reimburse for expenses that were not re-couped via the selling of event tickets or other event incomes.  Please keep the following guidelines in mind regarding the grant program for monetary support.  

  • CAA can reimburse for expenses such as venue rental, catering, decorations, a speaker’s travel/meal expenses and other expenses that may be associated with an event.
  • CAA cannot reimburse for any costs associated with a non-CAA hosted website including the creation, design, maintenance, or email blasts.
  • CAA can only reimburse for gratuities of 18%
  • CAA cannot reimburse for any speaker honorarium.
  • CAA cannot reimburse for any alcohol expenses.
  • Grant Applications must be submitted within the application period. 
  • Unused monetary support is not able to be rolled over to the next year.
  • Monetary support is not guaranteed even if application has been submitted.

Qualifying for Support

In order to qualify for monetary support, your chapter must fulfill the following requirements.

  1. Meet all of the expectations and responsibilities of maintaining a charter with CAA.
  2. Submit a complete Grant Application on time—incomplete applications will not be eligible for consideration.
  3. Be able to articulate how your event or use of monetary support clearly aligns with CAA’s mission and strategic priorities.

Expectations from CAA

If the grant is is used to support an event:

  1. The chapter must utilize an email blast through CAA to promote the event to the alumni community that the chapter serves.
  2. The chapter must actively communicate the event to their membership—whether through email, social media, etc.
  3. The chapter must employ a registration system to collect alumni participant information.
  4. The event must happen—if the event is cancelled, the grant will be rescinded.
  5. The chapter must complete an Event Report—including a list of the event attendees.
  6. Please take photos at the event and share them with CAA after the event. CAA reserves the right to use the photos for CAA marketing, including but not limited to, email, web, social media, and print collateral.

If the grant is used to support something other than an event (e.g. production of a newsletter):

  1. The Alumni Chapters staff will determine the best way to measure the impact and engagement of the chapter’s effort.
  2. A general report that breaks down the perceived success and the impact on the alumni community will be required.

Disbursement of Grant Money

  • The money is a direct reimbursement to the chapter. Chapters will be notified of the amount for which they have been approved for reimbursement. Reimbursements will be made based on actual costs which are accompanied by itemized receipts - copies are accepted.
  • Any unused money will not be “floated” to another event or expenses unrelated to the approved grant.
  • Reimbursements will not be issued until all expectations are fulfilled.
  • All receipts should be turned in at once—we will cut one check per grant.
  • Please confirm with your Alumni Chapter Advisor the correct name to be included on the check and the address it should be sent to.  CAA can only issue a check to a Board Member.   

Decisions and Notification

Decisions will be made by the CAA Alumni Chapters department, and are final. Notification will be directed to the chapter president and to the contact person listed on the Grant Application.


Scholarships to Students

Scholarships to Students

Many alumni chapters want to give scholarships or gifts to Cal students. Raising money for and awarding scholarships is a complex endeavor that is subject to many tax and legal rules. Over the years, CAA has outlined the best ways for alumni chapters to get involved with scholarships. Please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor with any questions.

1.       Volunteer with CAA Alumni Scholarships

Please visit for information about volunteering to be a District Chair, reader, and/or interviewer.

2.       Raise money for the CAA Alumni Scholarships

Alumni Chapters are encouraged to fundraise on behalf of CAA Alumni Scholarships. Alumni Chapters may choose to receive checks at an event or donate proceeds from an event to CAA. To learn more about how to make or submit contributions to CAA, please refer to the “Contributions” section of the Alumni Chapters Manual.

Event Liability + D&O Insurance

Event Liability Insurance

Starting on January 1, 2011, all alumni chapter leaders have to individually enter their own alumni chapter events through the Mercer website. Mercer is the company CAA contracts with for our event liability insurance.

A member of your alumni chapter will need to register all of your events – including viewing parties – at least two weeks before they occur in order to be properly covered. The Mercer website is easy to use to submit an online application for insurance for your event. You may also fill out a physical application.

If the event venue requests to be listed as an additional insured on our policy, please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor. This feature is NOT available through the Mercer website.

Directors and Officers (D&O) Insurance

The D&O coverage is part of our Insurance Policy with Mercer Insurance.  There is nothing that you as chapter leaders need to do to ensure coverage, this policy automatically covers all registered board members of a CAA Chartered Alumni Chapter. 

Please be sure to provide your advisor with an up-to-date list of all your board members. You may also use the board member update tool

D&O Insurance Policy

Chapter Mailing Address + Bulk Mailing

Usage of CAA’s Mailing Address

(1 Alumni House, Berkeley, CA 94720)

CAA’s mailing address cannot be used for Alumni Chapter communication, including bank statements, newsletters, and collection of chapter membership dues. CAA cannot accept mail or monies on your behalf. We suggest opening a local P.O. Box that can be used as your leadership changes.

Bulk Mailing (and using CAA’s nonprofit mailing permit)

As a chartered alumni chapter of CAA, you have the ability to use our nonprofit indicia for bulk mailing purposes. While bulk mailing is less expensive, the process can be cumbersome. The delivery of your pieces can take 4-6 weeks. The mail must be dropped off at a post office that accepts bulk mail and they may request that it be sorted by zip code. The indicia must appear in a particular way with specific information.

Importantly, alumni chapters must calculate the approximate amount of bulk postage needed BEFORE mailing so CAA can add money to our “checking account” with the post office. The post office will not mail your pieces unless there is sufficient money pre-paid. Please allow 2 weeks for CAA to add money to our postal account. In order to qualify for these funds, the chapter must apply through our Grant Program.

For more information, go to and type “indicia” in the search box.

Whether or not you use the bulk mailing service, we recommend using CAA’s mailing house, First Class Plus (, for the printing and addressing of your print pieces.

Dissolve of Charter

Running a Chartered Alumni Chapter with the Cal Alumni Association (CAA) is a big responsibility and requires the efforts of multiple board members working together to be truly successful. As is common with any volunteer run organization, there can be challenges with leadership succession, community engagement, and burn-out. While the Alumni Chapters staff is never excited to see these things happen, we do understand that it does happen and can effect the chapter’s ability to maintain a charter and engage their alumni community.  

Charters are renewed annually (in January) as long as the alumni chapter has fulfilled its charter responsibilities for the previous year. 

An Alumni Chapter can decide at any time to dissolve their charter with CAA.

CAA also reserves the right to dissolve the charter with an alumni chapter if the chapter:

If a charter is dissolved, the following policy and guidelines will need to be followed by the exiting board members:

  • “Cal Alumni Association”, “CAA”, and the CAA logo cannot be used in chapter name, materials, or website.
  • CAA will not list the chapter on any of its marketing materials nor will CAA promote any events that the chapter hosts or participates in.
  • If the chapter is using a hosted website through CAA, it will be taken down.
  • The chapter will not be covered under CAA’s event liability insurance.
  • If the chapter was provided with a CAA-made banner, it must returned it to CAA. It will be returned if the chapter re-establishes itself.
  • The chapter must relinquish all official chapter monies to CAA and close any accounts associated with CAA’s Tax ID. The monies will be held with CAA in the chapter’s name and given back to the chapter if it re-establishes itself or if another chapter is started that serves the same constituents.

Services to Cal

This section of the manual provides information about how alumni chapters can serve UC Berkeley, current and prospective students, and alumni. We believe that by supporting our alma mater, we will make a difference in helping UC Berkeley maintain and grow its status as one of the greatest universities in the world.

The Alumni Chapters Program supports and encourages 6 Services to Cal:

Alumni Networking

Cal Pride/Spirit

Lifelong Learning



Student Involvement

Please review the following pages for details about the 6 Services to Cal.

Alumni Networking

The cornerstone of being a part of an alumni chapter is networking with other Cal alumni. Bring alumni together through some of these networking activities.

Networking Events

Hold your own career or social networking event in your area. Happy Hours at a bar are great ways to attract younger alumni. Casual picnics that are kid-friendly are great ways to attract Cal alumni with young children. Starting a book club can be a great way to attract Cal alumni of all ages.

Networking via @cal (

@cal is the online community for Cal alumni. You can set up a Berkeley forwarding email address, connect with friends, join groups, search and post jobs, or start a discussion! Your alumni chapter should be a “group” on @cal.

Local Professional Networking Events

Keep abreast of local professional networking events in your area and encourage your Alumni Chapter members to attend.

Cal Pride/Spirit

A great way to connect with Cal Alumni from all class years and backgrounds is through showing your Cal pride and spirit–locally, at a sporting event, or talking about Cal to others.

Participate in Campus/CAA Spirit Events

Alumni and Family Weekend (formerly known as Homecoming)

Organize a chapter event or attendance around Homecoming including CAA’s Young Alumni Tailage, or visit Alumni House – your home on campus!

Charter Gala                                                                 

Attend CAA’s signature event celebrating the founding of the University of California and raising needed monies for CAA.

Be Involved in CAA’s Athletics Events

Away Football Game Tailgates

CAA hosts pre-game tailgates for select away football games. We rely on our Alumni Chapter in the area to volunteer during the party and/or organize an informal Friday night gathering.

Home Men’s Basketball Hoops Parties

Host a table or more at one of CAA’s Hoops Parties, held in Alumni House before a select number of men’s home basketball games.

Bowl Game Activities

Participate in CAA’s bowl game activities as a chapter and/or volunteer to help.

Other Spirited Ways to Get Involved

Viewing Parties

When Cal is playing on TV, we encourage you to set up a viewing party at a bar or restaurant to provide local Cal alumni a welcoming place to view the game and cheer Cal to victory.

CAA Membership

Encourage your chapter members to become dues paying members of CAA. We will all thrive if we support each other.


Lifelong Learning

Over the years, we have heard from alumni—from all eras and from all over the country—who want to learn new skills, challenge their intellects, and who miss the educational aspects of their lives as students. You may satisfy one of your Services to Cal by providing programs that impart practical knowledge or that stimulate the minds of your chapter members. Help keep your members connected to one of the best aspects of their experience at Cal—the education!

Ways your alumni chapter can fulfill this Service:

  • Plan campus speaker events (see Campus Speakers for more information)
  • Organize outings to local museums, intellectual lectures, or cultural events
  • Participate in practical seminars: financial planning, buying a house, or career services
  • Host a reception for your members before or after a faculty seminar during Homecoming or a Discover Cal lecture series
  • As an Alumni Chapter, attend a Discover Cal lecture
  • Participate in community building activities such as beach clean-ups, reading to kids, or volunteering for a soup kitchen


Now, more than ever, UC Berkeley and CAA need your support. Inspire your alumni chapter to donate towards a Cal cause through one of the opportunities listed here.

CAA Fund

As the cornerstone of the Cal Alumni Association, The CAA Fund supports programs and services that impact you and the University. CAA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit and self-funded organization that relies on contributions to operate its programs. Your annual investment in The CAA Fund ensures that we actively and effectively involve, inform, and inspire all alumni to stay connected to the University and each other. Together, Cal is our cause.

CAA Scholarship Endowments

Endowments are essential to maintain a sustainable scholarship program.

Your Alumni Chapter can donate to an existing CAA endowment for any of our 3 scholarship programs or establish a new endowment with a minimum of $50,000 raised over a maximum of 5 years. If your chapter is interested in starting or contributing to an endowment, please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor who will connect you to our Development Department.

The Leadership Award Your gift to The Leadership Award directly supports the leaders of tomorrow by giving them access to UC Berkeley. Approximately 650 incoming and continuing scholars receive one-year scholarships of $2,000 each year.

The Achievement Award Program (TAAP) Your contribution to The Achievement Award directly supports high financial need students who serve the community. Each year, approximately 25 incoming freshman and junior transfers are welcomed and receive up to $6,000 per year (for 4 years or 2 years, respectively) and a laptop.

The Kruttschnitt Aspire Scholar​ship Program (KASP) Your support of the Kruttschnitt Aspire Scholarship Program helps to increase diversity on the UC Berkeley campus. The program supports low-income, underrepresented minority students who have been admitted to Cal as an incoming freshman or junior college transfer. Each year, CAA welcomes 25 incoming freshman and junior transfers with an award of $6,000 per year (for 4 years or 2 years, respectively) and a laptop.

Campus Non-Scholarships Fundraising

Alumni Chapters may choose to fundraise monies for campus non-scholarships beneficiaries such as academic units, libraries, student groups, etc.



Volunteers are a vital part of CAA’s scholarship program.

Since 1934, The Leadership Award has recognized and supported Cal student leaders with merit-based scholarships. With more than 15,000 scholars since its inception, The Leadership Award is the largest merit-based scholarship of its kind in the UC system. The scholarship is awarded to Cal students who are able to inspire others to mobilize for a cause, apply innovative methods to solving challenges, and can make a visible impact on the campus.

Since 1999, The Achievement Award Program has provided high achieving, low-income students with the resources needed to attend and excel at UC Berkeley. This CAA scholarship program serves freshmen and transfer students who might not otherwise have the resources to attend college. Most Achievement Award Program scholars are first generation college students.

The Kruttschnitt Aspire Scholarship Program (KASP), previously known as the Equity Scholarship, is named in recognition of a legacy commitment made by Cal alumnus, local business and community leader, Theodore (Ted) H. Kruttschnitt ’64. The program supports low-income, underrepresented minority students who have been admitted to Cal as an incoming freshman or junior college transfer. In addition to financial aid, Kruttschnitt Aspire Scholars receive wrap-around services to ensure their success at Cal.

How can your alumni chapter participate?

  • Serve as a CAA Scholarship District Chair by recruiting alumni volunteers and arranging local interviews for incoming freshmen. (Please keep in mind that this commitment is an estimated total of 50 hours over 6 months.)
  • Read, evaluate, and score scholarship applications under the direction of the CAA Scholarship Office (March/April/July).
  • Interview scholarship applicants with training from the CAA Scholarship Office (May/April/Sept).
  • Participate in panels, social networking events, and workshops hosted by the Cal Alumni Scholars Association. 
  • If your Alumni Chapter would like to invite local CAA Scholarship recipients to your events, please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor at least one month before the event date.

Please Note If your chapter is interested in running your own scholarship program or gifting money to students outside of the CAA Scholarship program, please be advised that we have a defined process in place that must be followed.

More information here

Contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor for more information.

Student Involvement

YES Berkeley! Student Recruitment Program

Alumni Chapters can play an integral role in attracting the brightest and best students to UC Berkeley.

College Fair Alumni Ambassadors Represent UC Berkeley at local College Fairs during the Fall semester. Mandatory admissions trainings take place during the month of August every year.

New Student Receptions Team up with the Office of Undergraduate Admissions during April to share your Cal experience with local students who have been admitted to UC Berkeley.

Summer Welcome Parties Alumni Chapters can host and plan an afternoon of networking and activities for the new incoming Cal students and their families before they attend Berkeley in the fall.

Student and Alumni Engagement

Student organizations sponsored by CAA create a vital link between Cal students and Cal alumni through their programming and events. In order to showcase a model to current students of dedicated alumnihood and “giving back,” alumni involved in Alumni Chapters are encouraged to attend events such as:

  • Top Dog Career Networking Luncheon in February
  • Panel discussions with students at Alumni House
  • Young Alumni and Graduating Senior events in May
  • Legacy Night Dinner during Alumni and Family Weekend in October

Event Planning and Publicity Tools

This section of the manual will provide you and your fellow Alumni Chapter leaders with a detailed overview of the tools and resources that CAA provides, as well as some very effective best practices on how to run and manage events. You can also refer to the Marketing Best Practices handout above for more tips.  

As always, feel free to reach out to your Alumni Chapter Advisor with any questions or needs you might have to ensure the success of your chapter’s events.  

Event Planning Tips

Successful events don’t just happen on their own; they are well planned and coordinated. Preparation is the key to any successful event. When planning an event, you and your volunteers are responsible for the education, entertainment, nourishment, safety, and care of all attendees. Here are some tips to consider when planning your events.

1. Create an event plan with your volunteer leaders and event staff.

i. What is the goal of the event? What does success look like?
ii. Who is the target audience? What do they get out of it?
iii. What is your budget? How many volunteer hours do you need?
iv. What program elements do you want, such as food, speaker, etc.?

2. Choose events that your volunteers are passionate about hosting, as a successful event requires time commitment from its leaders. Diversify your calendar of events to attract different constituencies.

3. When choosing a date, check campus and other Cal calendars – Cal Athletics, major campus events, CAA events, etc. to make sure there are no conflicts with your potential event date. Local entertainment calendars are good to check also.

4. Secure venue, keynote speakers, and any catering services at least 3-4 months ahead of time. Make sure you understand the terms of the venue/catering contracts and when deposits and guarantees are due. With keynote speakers, confirm travel arrangements, topic, bio and other arrangements.

5. How are you going to promote your event? Utilizing a “Save the Date” communication, followed by a “RSVP/Ticket Purchase,” then a final “Reminder” communication is good practice. All events should have a website for more information and a way to register online.

6. Have Clear, Concise, and Consistent communications. Make sure that all of your communication channels (email, print, website, etc.) have the same clear information regarding the event.

7. Put yourself in the shoes of an attendee and “walk through” your event, starting with the communications you receive (do you understand what the event is?), to arriving on-site (is it obvious where to park?), to the enjoyment of the event (can a person hear in the back of the room?).

8. Send a post-event survey (with a free service such as SurveyGizmo) to your attendees to assess your event. Ask the question: “Would you recommend this event to your friends?”


Event Publicity Through CAA

CAA can post your events on our website to promote your chapter events to the general alumni population so you can attract new alumni to your event and to your Chapter. 

Online Event Postings

We need the following information to post your event online: (and can add more information at any time):

  • Name of event
  •  Date
  • Location (name and full address)
  • Contact person name, email, and phone number
  •  Description

This additional information would be very helpful:

  • Time (start and end)
  •  Cost
  •  Website
  • Registration deadline and walk-up information
  • Program including speaker information, if there is one

This information would add value to your event:

  •  Menu
  • Is the event kid-friendly?
  • Disability accommodations
  • Parking information
  • Dress code
  •  Directions
  •  Entertainment

Campus Speakers

Alumni Chapters often want to host events that include a presentation from a campus speaker. These events are rewarding and interesting for UC Berkeley alumni. Obtaining a campus speaker, however, can be a challenging endeavor. Below are steps and tips to help your chapter be successful in recruiting campus speakers, but please remember that faculty and campus administrators are really busy, so be realistic in your search.

Step One Begin your recruitment at least five months in advance of your event. Being flexible with your dates may increase your success in finding a speaker.

Step Two Identify a list of topics that you think would be interesting to your Chapter members. Contact your desired speakers with a “preliminary inquiry” (not an invitation) so you can contact several speakers at one time to assess their availability and interest.

Step Three Once you have a speaker who is interested and available, send them an invitation. Provide information about the speaking opportunity (date, time, location, speaking time, expectations). Clarify travel arrangements and inform your speaker about any expense reimbursement.

Tips for Finding a Speaker

  • Find a date/time that works for campus speakers. The start of a new semester or the height of finals is generally not a great time for faculty members. For coaches, don’t request them if their sport is in season.
  • Consider asking emeriti faculty who have a lifetime of experience but are often less busy than faculty who are actively teaching or researching.
  • If a faculty member is not available, but your chapter is really interested in a specific topic, ask the faculty member to recommend a graduate student who is knowledgeable about the topic and is a good speaker.
  • Consider campus administrators – not just the Chancellor. The provost, vice chancellors, director of admissions are just a few examples of interesting speakers who know quite a bit about what’s happening on campus today.
  • Tag onto a faculty member/campus administrator’s existing trip to your city, or create a chapter event around a Cal lecture in your city.
  • Look for speaker ideas by looking through issues of the California magazine. Look at campus websites for lists of faculty award winners, interesting faculty research and past faculty lectures.


  • Who makes the “ask”? The alumni chapter should make the “ask” especially if there’s a personal connection. Your position as an alumni leader can be just as influential, if not more so, than any CAA staff member. Your Alumni Chapter Advisor can also assist you.
  • Who pays for speaker expenses? The chapter typically pays for speaker expenses. Our team recommends that chapters create an event budget and charge a ticket price that will help the chapter at least break-even.  

Student Spirit and Musical Groups

Alumni Chapters often wish to have the Rally Committee, Yell Leaders, the Cal Band, the UC Men’s Octet, the Women’s California Golden Overtones, the Dance Team and/or Oski appear and perform at their events. There are other less well known student performance groups worth exploring (e.g. UC Ballroom Dancers, UC Jazz Choir, Indus Dance Team). Your Alumni Chapter Advisor can help you contact the leaders of these groups and their staff advisors.

Follow these Steps

Determine which chapter or chapters you would like to perform at your event, then contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor at least two months prior to your event with this information:

  • Date of the event
  • Time of the event
  • Location of the event
  • Group(s) you want to appear

Your Alumni Chapter Advisor will contact the chapter(s) you have requested and inform you of the costs and the group’s availability. Your Alumni Chapter will be responsible for paying the student performers directly.

A sample of fees is included below. The Cal Band typically asks for $500-$1000 depending on the event. Oski can be up to $500. Prices are subject to change, so please check with your Alumni Chapter Advisor when budgeting.

UC Men’s Octet and Women’s Golden Overtones Performance Fee Structure

  On-Campus Off-Campus within Berkeley City limits Off-Campus outside Berkeley City limits*
1 to 3 songs $100 $150 $350
4+ songs up to 20 minutes $150 - $200 $200 - $250 $500
20 to 30 minutes $250 $300 $600

* Within 30-mile radius. If over a 30-mile radius, fee arranged on a case-by-case basis.

Other UC Berkeley Singing/Performing Groups

Your Alumni Chapter Advisor can also help you access other singing/performing groups on campus. Many of the groups tour nationally and have garnered awards for the performances. The rates are different than those quoted above and depend on the individual group.

Usage of Cal and CAA Logos

If your chapter wishes to produce merchandise with a Cal logo (script Cal, bear paw, walking bear, Oski, etc.) or the CAA logo, either for sale or for giveaway, the production and design must be approved by the Office of Marketing & Business Outreach (OMBO) office, and the merchandise must be produced by a Cal licensed vendor. Merchandise for resale is subject to royalties.

For print or online communications, Cal or CAA logos may be used without University approval, but must still follow OMBO and CAA identity guidelines. Logos may not be altered in any way, should use the correct color formula, and should be printed on a plain background. No red is permitted!

For more information and guidelines regarding the University’s policies, visit

For CAA identity guidelines, visit

Alumni and Student Data

We are able to help our chartered Alumni Chapters with contacting alumni (from the Cal Advancement Database System – CADS) and students (from the Office of Undergraduate Admissions) in order to promote alumni chapter activities and specific YES Berkeley! Student Recruitment events. Below are general guidelines for data requests and usage.

Alumni Data

  • The purpose of CAA providing alumni data to your chapter is to help you recruit new members and to encourage them to sign up on your email list for more regular communications from your chapter.
  • We are only able to provide Alumni Chapters with ONE of the following forms of data per request: Mailing Address or Email Address.
  • Alumni Chapters are able to request alumni data from their geographical area or special interest four times per year, approximately once per quarter.
  • Production of an alumni data list takes four weeks, so please plan accordingly. The content needs to be provided to your chapter advisor two weeks after submitting a data request.
  • All email blasts will be sent by the Alumni Chapters staff and all mailings need to be sent through a local mailing house - per University rules, data cannot be provided directly to alumni chapters. 
  • New graduates are imported into CADS by the end of August of that year.

Alumni Data Pull Request Process and to access the Online Request Form - available here

Student Data

  • Alumni Chapters participating in YES Berkeley! Student Recruitment events can work with the program manager to promote their approved events to students.
  • We are unable to provide physical or electronic lists of student data to alumni chapters. All communications must be through the CAA/Convio Email system or approved Mailing Houses. NO exceptions.
  • Certain events (New Student Reception and Summer Welcome Party) have approval from Admissions for the provision of “phone banking” lists so that chapters can call the students to invite them.  Specific guidelines and expectations will be provided to participating chapters.
  • If your Alumni Chapter would like to invite local CAA Scholarship recipients to your events, please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor at least one month before the event date.

CAA Hosted Websites

CAA provides all of our Alumni Chapters with a hosted website. It is required for chartered Alumni Chapters to have a website with up-to-date information and calls to action for their volunteers and members.

Benefits of a CAA Hosted Website

  • It works seamlessly with the CAA website and creates consistent branding with CAA for your chapter.
  • It looks great and is very easy for your members and potential members to navigate.
  • It is customizable to your chapter’s needs. You can:
  • Encourage visitors to add themselves to your contact email list
  • Create custom subpages
  • Link to your chapter’s social media sites
  • List upcoming events
  • List interesting news pages
  • Highlight a special event or announcement
  • Upload documents
  • Provide links to websites of interest

Getting started on your CAA Hosted Website

  • Choose someone in your chapter to manage your website. He/she should be comfortable with computers and have an eye for detail, but they do not need any coding or HTML experience.
  • Contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor to create your page, short URL, and gain administrative access.
  • For step-by-step instructions, read the Alumni Chapter Websites - Chapter Leader Instructions above.

CAA’s Expectations of all Alumni Chapter Websites

  • The website must contain up-to-date and accurate information.
  • The website cannot link to any leader’s personal business.
  • Any non-CAA hosted website must include the “Chartered Alumni Chapter” logo provided by CAA on the website. Link this logo back to the CAA website (


Contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor for more information or with any questions you have.

Please Note: CAA is unable to provide website support for alumni chapters not using a CAA hosted website.

CAA Email Tool and Email Guidelines

CAA strongly encourages our Alumni Chapters to utilize the CAA Email Tool to send all of your emails. There are a number of benefits to using this tool over using conventional email providers. Listed below are general email guidelines that we would like all alumni chapters to follow when communicating with alumni and students.

Benefits of the CAA Email Tool

  • Stylish email template and formatting
  • “Opt-Out” language and links so people can manage their own email preferences
  • Bounceback email addresses are processed via Convio meaning no bounceback emails are sent to your email account
  • Software to avoid “spam” lists and ensure that current and prospective members get your email
  • Ability to create a customizable “From” name and “From” email address
  • Ability to send to 10,000+ email addresses at one time
  • Ability to manage multiple email lists, including:
    • Current chapter members
    • Chapter owners (officers)
    • Email subscribers (those who sign up via your website)
    • Data lists that CAA pulls for you

For step-by-step instructions, read the “CAA Hosted Email Tool Tutorial” available here.

CAA’s Expectations of all Alumni Chapter Email Blasts

  • Keep your emails concise and clear. Use bigger fonts and/or bullets to highlight key information. Keep your descriptions short and link to your website and social media pages for more information. Have a clear way for people to RSVP for any event.
  • Chapters may only use the CAA Alumni Chapters Email Wrapper, we are unable to make custom modifications to this wrapper. Do not use the Blank Email Wrapper.
  • Text based emails have the highest open and click-through rates. Please do not include overly large images or images with important event information in your emails. Image heavy formatting is a common spam red flag.
  • Any non-CAA email blasts must include specific “Opt-Out” language at the bottom of your email (see Glossary). Manage your own list of these “Opt-Out” requests and provide the list regularly to your Alumni Chapter Advisor so we can update the Cal alumni database.

Social Media

Social Media is defined as any form of online presence that allows end users to engage in multi-directional conversations in or around the content on the website. It would be a lofty task for us to define all of the ways that alumni chapters could successfully utilize Social Media platforms (our suggestions would be out-dated within 4 months). What we can do is provide you with some suggestions to get your chapter started.


Once seen as a place for younger people to connect online, people of all ages are joining Facebook and looking for communities to join. Setting up a Facebook  Group or Page for your Alumni Chapter is a great way to create a social media presence, attract new members, and provide an online community for your members.

  • Group or Page? There are a number of great “Help” articles in the Facebook Help Area.
  • “Like” the Cal Alumni Association Page on Facebook:


@cal is UC Berkeley’s online alumni community. This community is similar to Facebook, but is only open to Cal alumni. You can also create a Cal forwarding email address through this portal.


LinkedIn’s mission is to connect the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful.

  • Creating a LinkedIn “Group” for your alumni chapter will provide a space for your alumni to connect with Cal alumni in their region, ethnicity or area of interest in regards to their career development.
  • Join the Cal Alumni Association’s LinkedIn group:



The online community of Cal alumni and members of CAA. Find the community and update your information at

Active Members

Individuals who consistently attend meetings, events and functions as well as volunteer and correspond with the Alumni Chapter regularly.

Alumni Chapter Leaders Email List

Every alumni chapter president is required to be on this email list to receive updates from CAA. Additional chapter leaders may also join the email list by contacting your Alumni Chapter Advisor.

Alumni Chapter Leadership Conference

The summer meeting of alumni chapter leaders held in Berkeley.

Alumni House Rental

( CAA rents the Alumni House for events, parties, social gatherings, conferences and community functions. CAA will cover some costs of the set up / clean up done by CAA event staff — please contact your Alumni Chapter Advisor for additional details. Your Alumni Chapter will be responsible for any other fees such as linens, catering, decorations, etc.


One custom banner will be provided for each chapter throughout their tenure in the program - after three years of successfully meeting the charter responsibilities. Should the banner be lost or destroyed, CAA can facilitate making a new banner, but the chapter will pay for it.


Blog is short for “web log” which is usually an online presence maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. The ability of readers to leave comments in an interactive format is an important part of many blogs.

Board of Directors, Cal Alumni Association

( The governing body of the membership of the Cal Alumni Association. Each board member serves a three-year term and is selected to engage in the Policy Governance work of the Association.

Bulk Mailing

The United States Postal Service (USPS) is able to send mail at a less expensive and slower rate to qualified nonprofit organizations such as CAA. Chartered alumni chapters have the ability to use CAA’s permit for their mailings. See the “Bulk Mailing” section on Page 17.

CADS—Cal Advancement Data System

CADS is the official University database for the UC Berkeley campus containing records for people and organizations associated with UC Berkeley, including alumni, donors, prospective donors, faculty, parents, corporations, foundations, and members of the Cal Alumni Association. Your Alumni Chapter Advisor will use it to fulfill your data requests.


Every person and organization in the CADS database has a unique CADS ID number. Associating the correct CADS ID with each of your members in your own database will facilitate updates to CADS, resulting in future data pulls to be more accurate.

Call To Action

A “Call to Action” is calling out specifically what you would like the user to do: Sign up for your alumni chapter communications, attend an event, volunteer, etc.

Co-sponsorship of Events

Alumni Chapters may wish to co-sponsor certain Berkeley events in their area. When partnering with CAA or the campus, the Alumni Chapter will be listed as a co-sponsor and be involved in the event planning process.

Color Formula

UC Berkeley and CAA use particular colors for their logos. Please visit or for specifics.


CAA has partnered with Convio, a third-party website and email host, to provide the benefits outlined in this manual. You can find more information about this company at

Data Management Protocol Agreement (DMPA)

CAA is bound by campus policy and by state and federal laws regarding data use and privacy. Given the sensitive nature of data, Alumni Chapters are required to sign and adhere to an agreement defining the management and protection of CAA-provided data. CAA is committed to ensuring that the data we provide is used appropriately.

Dissolution / De-charter

An Alumni Chapter can decide at any time to dissolve and terminate their relationship with CAA. CAA reserves the right to de-charter an Alumni Chapter at their discretion. Chapters that do not meet the responsibilities stated in this Alumni Chapters Manual will be de-chartered.

Event Liability Coverage

Starting on January 1, 2011, all alumni chapter leaders have to individually enter their own alumni chapter events through the Marsh Connections website. Marsh is the company CAA contracts with for our event liability insurance. The “Event Liability Insurance How-To” is available for download here

Alumni Chapter Leaders Site

CAA hosts a site where Alumni Chapter leaders can access internal documents and stay up-to-date about deadlines and resources available for chartered Alumni Chapters.


The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) is a Federal Law enacted in 1974 that protects the privacy of student education records and contact information.

Key Events (Alumni Chapter Advisor Attendance)

All alumni chapters can request Alumni Chapter Advisors or other CAA Staff to attend key events that reach a wide range of constituents. Staff will need at least three months lead time to prepare arrangements for the trip. If you request the attendance of a CAA Board or senior staff member, please work with your Alumni Chapter Advisor to prepare a briefing document in advance.

Membership Roster

Chapters will submit a complete listing of all members (both active and passive) of your Alumni Chapter so CAA can code your members in the CADS database and update the University’s information. Please include CADS IDs if you have them. To be considered a “member” of your chapter, the person must have opted into your mailing list, signed up for your Facebook group, attended an alumni chapter event, or have expressed interest in some manner of your chapter. These lists are due to your advisor in March of each year.

Online Alumni Communities (OAC)

( Alumni wishing to connect with fellow alumni in their regional area or area of special interest but who do not wish to become a CAA chartered alumni chapter can form an Online Alumni Community (OAC). These communities do not receive benefits as outlined in this manual. If interested, contact CAA’s Alumni Chapters Staff at for more information.

Opt-Out Language

If you choose to send an email blast not through CAA’s email blast tool, the following text must be included at the bottom of every email message:

“You are receiving this email because we thought you might be interested in our alumni chapter, an official entity under the Cal Alumni Association (CAA). If you would like to be opted out of future email communications, either from our alumni chapter, the Cal Alumni Association or the University of California, Berkeley, please reply to this email with “Unsubscribe” in the subject line and specify which list you’d like to be removed from. Please note that if you do this, you will no longer receive any email communications from the chapter(s) you specify and will not be notified about upcoming events or opportunities for involvement.”

Preliminary Inquiry

In regards to requesting a speaker for your event, a preliminary inquiry should be sent first before a formal ask. You can send several preliminary inquires at one time. Information included should be: several date options, proposed location (city name), approximate number of participants, profile of the audience, structure of event (lunch, dinner, reception, etc.), length of speech and reimbursement options. The correspondence is meant to gauge their interest.

University Policy on Non-Discrimination

The Cal Alumni Association in accordance with the University of California, and in accordance with applicable federal and state law and University policy, prohibits discrimination, including harassment, on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, disability, age, medical condition (cancer related), ancestry, marital status, citizenship, sexual orientation or status as a Vietnam-era veteran or special disabled veteran. This non-discrimination policy covers admission, access and treatment in University programs and activities including but limited to the Cal Alumni Association reserving the right to not recognize chapters who apply for Alumni Chapter status who violate the terms set forth above.