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Alumnae Survey 2020

We asked what our alumnae thought. They responded and we want them to know — we are listening. Here’s what we learned…

September 8, 2021

MSMU alumnae feel good about their alma mater                  

The majority of respondents have a positive opinion of Mount Saint Mary’s University. In fact, 94% of survey respondents describe their experience as good to excellent. 

  • 81% have a high affinity for the Mount
  • 91% of alumnae rate their decision to attend as good to great
  • 92% of alumnae recommend the Mount to prospective students
  • 94% describe their student experience as good to excellent   

What MSMU alumnae think about themselves






What matters most to the alumnae about the Mount

Alumnae want to know that the value of their degree is greater today than the day they graduated, and they want to understand what MSMU is doing to increase that value.

The diverse population at the Mount and the accomplishments of its students help define how the value of their degree are also of high importance to alumnae, especially first-generation college measured. Scholarship opportunities are also of high importance to the alumnae, especially first-generation college graduates.

A graduate from 1954 wrote that the survey made her “remember the excellent education I received as well as the generosity of four years of scholarships. I am proud of the Mount’s diversity and quality of education.”

  • The value of and respect for an MSMU degree
  • That MSMU provides a diverse and inclusive environment
  • Scholarship opportunities MSMU provides
  • The accomplishments of current students 

The current student experience matters to alumnae

Alumnae know that the value of their degree is in large part based on the current student experience. When asked what matters most to them about that experience, they said: quality of academic classes, skills training for career, and internships. Alumnae want to know if these important parts of the student experience are better today than they were when they were students. The short answer is that they are and are continually improving.

Vernice Grajeda ’11, president of the Alumnae Association, views that response as reflective of the Mount’s culture of care where every single student matters. “The stories from current students and alumnae time and time again echoes the theme of individual care and attention.”

“We don’t see students as just being with us for four years — it’s for a lifetime,” says Rosalyn Kempf, EdD, assistant vice president of student affairs. “And they see it that way, too. It’s why so many alums return to campus, how many reach out and the love they show for our institution.” 







of academics and classes


training for career


and practical experience 

Alumnae feel good about the way MSMU prepared them for life after graduation


Alumnae credit a lot of their success in life to the time they spent at the Mount. More than 80% of the alumnae feel the Mount prepared them well in areas ranging from learning to believe in themselves to being a leader.






Alumnae remember their student experience fondly 

Alumnae most remember participating in their student clubs, on campus work-study employment, community service, honor society, their major or academic-related student clubs or organizations, and professional or career-related organizations. 

“I was given the education and resources to grow,” says a 2020 alumna. “I found my voice as well as my passions in life, and I became a stronger leader because of everything I learned and everything I experienced during my time at the Mount.”

We also know that if current students see an engaged alumna on campus enhancing the student experience, they have a greater chance of wanting to emulate that alumna’s behavior and return after graduation to help students get the most out of their time at the Mount.







"One thing that's important is knowing what the University has been doing regarding new programs, clubs and organizations, and buildings. A second important factor is frequent alumnae outreach. I like to know that the University never forgets about its alumnae and does its best to keep them engaged after they leave the Mount.”

A 2014 Alumna

Alumnae want to stay connected through communications 

Alumnae care about what is happening on campus and believe we do a good job keeping them informed. Regular emails, invitations to University and alumnae activities, and communications about the benefits of being an alumnae rank highest in the survey. Our website and social media help alumnae stay informed about academics and student life.

“I enjoy reading about the new programs and opportunities the Mount is offering current and future students,” says a 2002 alumna. “It is important to know that the Mount is keeping up to date with the times.”

Alumnae, especially those who graduated prior to 2000, read our magazine and emails more than other forms of communication. While our post-2000 graduates also read the magazines and emails, they enjoy staying up to date through our social media platforms.

Our more recent graduates told us that they want more information about alumnae benefits, as well as events and current programs for students. 

“Mount Saint Mary’s College — now University — is a classic liberal arts institution. The value of such an education cannot be overestimated. Influencing traditional students at a crucial, formative time in their lives, and expanding their worldview through travel, literature, politics, philosophy, etc., shapes people who make positive contributions to our shared world. I was lucky enough to have received such an education.”
– A 1989 Alumna 

What inspires alumnae to support the Mount financially 

We are continually humbled and appreciative of the generosity our alumnae and friends show in the many ways they support and promote the Mount. As part of this survey, we wanted to know what most inspires our alumnae to give to the Mount. We were told that the top five reasons for giving are providing financial support to students, increasing the quality of academics, lowering the tuition for our current students, attracting high- quality faculty and knowing how the gifts are used.

The first four reasons alumnae give correlate directly to our top funding priorities. We are committed to making sure that our graduates know how their gifts are used to further these and other priorities that are important to them. Every gift we receive is critical to our ability to further the vision and mission of the Mount, and we are grateful to all our alumnae for their support.  

Alumnae engage and like to see other alumnae engage with the Mount 

Through the years we have offered many programs and opportunities for our alumnae to connect with each other and the Mount. In this survey, we wanted to hear about which programs resonate most with our alumnae so we can meet their needs. Their responses told us two things. First, our alumnae care deeply about having us provide opportunities for them to learn and to support graduates and each other. Second, even if alumnae are unable to come to our events, they want to know what is being offered and that other alumnae and current students are benefiting from them.

“I really enjoy the fact that MSMU offers alumnae the opportunity to audit classes and participate without paying the whole class fee,” says a 2019 alumna. “For my career in the entertainment business, my skill sets always need sharpening, so to have access to these classes after graduation is invaluable.”